February 8, 2016

Firms fined for health and safety failings

Southwark Crown Court heard that a labourer and a bricklayer were working on a House of Lords site at Millbank, London, in July 2013.

One of the workers, who was just 22 at the time, struck the cable with a jackhammer while removing old brickwork and suffered serious burns to his arms, legs, hands and face. He was hospitalised for almost a month with the injuries.

His colleague, a 63-year-old man, also suffered significant burns to his face and neck. He has been treated for the longer term traumatic stress because of the incident and is unable to continue working with drills and machines.

Clive Graham Associates Limited (CGA) of 55 Farrington Road, London, who was the principal contractor for the project, pleaded guilty to a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £45,000. The firm was also ordered to pay £6,612 in costs.

The employer of the two injured workers, Bellmoor Construction Limited (Bellmoor), also admitted to falling foul of health and safety laws and received the same penalties.

HSE inspector Andrew Verrall-Withers said: “This serious incident should be a warning to the industry about the need to identify the risks to workers’ safety before work begins, so they can be protected.

“The ferocious explosion resulted in some serious injuries. This incident could easily have resulted in a fatality, and other employers should take this as a warning about the risks of working near electrical cables.”

At Royds, our team has a wealth of experience representing both claimants and defendants in respect of personal injury claims. For more information please visit or email James Millar Craig. For advice on health and safety legislation email Kevin James.

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