Director jailed after death of two construction workers

Grant Prior 2 years ago
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A company director has been jailed for 14 months after failing to undertake an adequate risk assessment and offer training to two construction workers who fell to their deaths.

Martin Gutaj, 44, of Brentford was sentenced at the Old Bailey on Friday and was barred from being a company director for the next four years.

Gutaj and his company Martinisation London Limited had previously been found guilty at an earlier trial.

Gutaj was found guilty of two breaches of safety laws. Martinisation London Limited was found guilty of two counts of corporate manslaughter and safety charges.

The company was fined £1.2m for each death and £650,000 for breaches of Health and Safety Regulations.

The court heard how on 21 November 2014, Tomasz Procko, 22 and Kyrol Szymanski, 29, both Polish nationals went to work that day and never returned home.

The men were working at a construction site in Cadogan Square run by Gutaj’s company.

During the course of the day the men were asked to perform a lifting operation at height without supervision and the requisite training.

The victims were not provided with a plan, method statement or risk assessment prior to the task being undertaken, thereby exposing them to the risk of serious harm.

The expectation was for the workmen to use a rope to haul a sofa over a balustrade and into a first floor apartment.

Advice from an experienced and reputable lifting company on how to carry out the process safely was ignored due to time and budgetary constraints.

Both workmen fell after railings on the balcony gave way whilst the furniture was being manoeuvred into premises.

Police were called at 10:04hrs and officers, paramedics and London’s Air Ambulance attended.

Tomasz Procko was pronounced dead at the scene.

Karol Szymanski was taken to a central London hospital in a critical condition where he later died.

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