Harrow Crown Court heard how Eric Ihoeghinlan, an employee of Gabem Management Ltd, fell through a lighting grid hatch while recovering electrical cables for BBC Studioworks Ltd during a de-rigging operation.
He sustained multiple injuries including a blood clot to the brain, fractured pelvis and ankles, and a ruptured spleen. Due to the brain damage caused, it’s unknown if he will ever work again.
An HSE investigation into the incident which occurred on 18 November 2014, found the hatches of the lighting grids and the ends of one, did not have any edge protection.
BBC Studioworks Ltd pleaded guilty to safety breaches and was fined £200,000 and ordered to pay costs of more than £6,000.
Elstree Light and Power Ltd was found guilty of breaching safety regulations and was fined £30,000 and ordered to pay costs of more than £39,000.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE Principal inspector Graham Tompkins said: “The employee’s injuries were life-changing and he could have easily been killed.
“This serious incident and the devastation caused could have been avoided if basic safe guards had been put in place.
“Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work related fatalities in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known”.
In the same proceedings, Elstree Film Studios Ltd was convicted of safety breaches unrelated to Mr Ihoeghinlan’s accident and was fined £16,000 and ordered to pay costs of more than £39,000.