HSE uses private detective to track down demolition boss

Grant Prior 2 years ago
Share

A Hertfordshire based demolition contractor has been found guilty for a series of safety failings after finally being tracked down by private detectives working for the HSE.

The Chesham site which initially brought Azte Demolition to the HSE's notice

The HSE first received a complaint in March 2014 from a member of the public living close to the former Chesham Community Hospital site in Buckinghamshire.

When safety inspectors arrived they found a catalogue of failings including the presence of asbestos containing materials among building debris, demolition arrangements not recorded in writing, and witness accounts of dangerous practises including unsafe work at height and use of construction machinery, poor site security and a lack of welfare facilities.

In HSE’s opinion there was also a serious risk of injury from collapse of partially demolished buildings.

Prohibition and Improvement Notices were immediately served on both the contractor and client to ensure on-going risks were controlled.

The client Chesham Care Ltd was prosecuted for failings under the CDM Regulations and fined a total amount of £30,000 in October 2015.

Milton Keynes Magistrates’ Court heard attempts were made by HSE to contact the contractor without avail.

In June 2015 an HSE inspector was alerted to unsafe working practices at a site in Stevenage, Hertfordshire.

The inspector found the same contractor in control of workers unsafely dismantling parts of the building to recover recyclables, such as metal.

No risk assessment had been done regarding respiratory exposure to asbestos containing materials.

The client told HSE the contractor was working without their knowledge on the site and had alerted the police.

As well as immediate enforcement action being taken on site to control risks, a private investigator was subsequently used to track down the contractor who had failed to respond to HSE.

Milton Keynes Magistrates’ Court heard Scot Ian Richardson t/a Aztec Demolition was acting as the contractor in control for both projects.

After a trial Scot Ian Richardson was found guilty of two breaches of the CDM Regulations 2007, one breach of The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 and one breach of The Health and Safety at Work Act etc,1974 and was sentenced to four months suspended custodial sentence and 200 hours community service order.

He was also ordered to pay costs of £1,200.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Rauf Ahmed said: “Sole traders who control workers to demolish and dismantle structures must understand their legal obligations.

“This is a high risk industry in which poor planning has no place. Family members expect their loved ones to come home in one piece.

“Clients have a key role in safely directing construction projects. Effective arrangements at the start can have an amplified positive impact down the various stages to completion, including making informed and competent appointments”

Latest news

Spurs confirm stadium opening delay

Tottenham holding urgent talks with Mace and trade contractors
8 hours ago

Crane drivers threaten “autumn of anarchy”

Unite members at mobile giant Ainscough in strike threat
15 hours ago

Road and commercial delays hit Polypipe profits

Residential sector still booming and materials giant confident about rest of the year
45 mins ago

Boot submits Nottingham £60m warehousing scheme

Building work set to start by autumn 2019
25 mins ago

Ikon blames collapse on site death investigation

Trade creditors owed more than £9m as assets sold to new firm set up by former directors
23 hours ago

Construction Enquirer Awards Top Ten winners revealed

More than 15,000 votes cast already. Book now for the big night
23 hours ago

£560m Welsh healthcare framework winners

Four contractors secure NHS Wales major project pipeline
1 day ago

Balfour Beatty starts Mayfair luxury flats

Luxury 32-flats scheme is being built at 60 Curzon Street
19 hours ago

Yorkshire Water starts bid race for £1bn AMP 7 work

Selected firms will deliver works not covered by tier one alliance partners
24 hours ago

Plans in for £350m Leicestershire warehouse hub

IM Properties submits plan for 3.6m sq ft logistics hub near the M42
24 hours ago

Redrow plots £180m Brentford mixed-use scheme

House builder teams up with social housing provider for 450-flat London scheme
22 hours ago

Galliford Try wins £11m Coventry swimming pool

Olympic-size pool to be built within leisure centre on 3G football pitch site
1 day ago

Track workers dive for their lives to avoid 125mph train

Agency staff scared to challenge unsafe system of work
4 days ago

Green light for 540-home Shoreham harbour resi scheme

Southern Housing Group to start 10-building development at disused Wharf
4 days ago

CBI calls for honest immigration debate to keep sites going

Business leaders want Theresa May to drop Post Brexit targets
4 days ago

Former Carillion MD to lead Balfour/Vinci HS2 team

Mark Davies appointed managing director of rail joint venture
5 days ago

Bristol Water seeks firms for £100m pipeline upkeep

Suppliers' day in Bristol later this month to set out plan to tackle leaks
4 days ago

H&V workers agree 5% pay rise over two years

Hourly rate to rise 2.5% in October with further 2.75% rise next year
4 days ago

Betting Spy: Liverpool to chase home Man City this season

Straight league forecast pays 13/5 while Burnley and Bournemouth can land an opening weekend double
4 days ago

Contract race starts to patch-up Carillion hospital

OJEU notice for deal worth up to £20m to secure stalled Midland Metropolitan Hospital
5 days ago

Balfour agrees North West highways umbrella company ban

Union Unite targets highways maintenance work in crusade against umbrella firms
5 days ago

Investing in people pays off for North Midland

Turnaround continues at contractor despite ongoing telecomms problems
5 days ago

Plans in for £100m phase one Swansea Central scheme

Bids due in this month on arena project
5 days ago

Graham wins £25m Procter & Gamble R&D facility

Reading Gillette innovation centre to be doubled in size
5 days ago

Boost your online presence – join the new Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers will showcase their products, services and latest stories
3 months ago

Kier scores July contracts league double

Move into shed and industrial sector helps to lift Kier
6 days ago

Opinion: Are all politicians completely useless?

Yes - and senior civil servant are just as bad
5 days ago

Midas loses touch in market margin squeeze

Pre-tax profit slumps to £0.7m as revenue rises 25% to £267m
6 days ago

Laing O’Rourke offloads Australian sleeper business

Austrak concrete rail sleeper manufacturing business sold for £30m
7 days ago

Bellway breaks 10,000 homes barrier

Incentives increased on higher value homes in otherwise stable pricing market
6 days ago

Contractor services