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Staffordshire construction firm fined after agency worker fall

Date:
14 October 2015

A construction company has been fined after an agency worker suffered life threatening chest injuries when he fell three and a half metres through a gap in a new floor. 

Kevin Quinn, 50, from Bognor Regis fractured his collarbone and ribs and suffered a collapsed lung in the fall, at Swanwick Marina, Hampshire on 3 July 2014. He required further surgery earlier this year and has been unable to return to work. 

Southampton Magistrates’ Court heard today (14 October) that F&S Freeman Limited was installing a concrete plank floor at first-floor level of a building under construction. 

Employees of F&S Freeman Limited were carrying out grouting and asked for Mr Quinn’s assistance. A large gap had been left in the new floor to allow materials to be lowered to the unfinished ground floor and Mr Quinn fell through the gap on to airbags below.

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found the airbags being used as a fall protection measure below the gap in the floor were not kept properly inflated and failed to break Mr Quinn’s fall. 

F&S Freeman Limited of Crossfield Industrial Estate, Lichfield, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £5000 and ordered to pay costs of £855. 

More information on fall protection measures can be found here: http://www.hse.gov.uk/construction/safetytopics/workingatheight.htm

Notes to editors 

  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce work-related death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training; new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement. hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: legislation.gov.uk/
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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