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Two companies fined after director of one falls through a skylight

Date:
16 February 2016

Two companies have been fined for safety failings after the director of one company fell through a skylight at the other company’s site.

Bournemouth Magistrates’ Court heard Touch Access Limited (TAL) of Bournemouth attended the site of Beagle Technology Group Limited (BTGL) to clean out roof gutters of the buildings. While carrying out this work the company director of TAL lost his balance and fell through a plastic skylight approximately fifteen feet. He sustained two broken wrists, a broken elbow, and cuts to his face.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the incident which occurred on 11 July 2013 found that TAL failed to ensure the work at height was properly planned and carried out safely.

BGTL failed to provide TAL with adequate information on the hazards and associated risks they would be exposed to in undertaking the work.

Touch Access Limited, of Wordsworth Avenue, Bournemouth, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, and was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay costs of £1,144.

Beagle Technology Group Limited, of Stony Lane, Christchurch, Dorset, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, and was fined £3,500 and ordered to pay costs of £1,144.

HSE inspector Damien Milbourne said after the hearing: “Working on roofs is a high risk activity because it involves working at height. Falls through fragile materials, such as roof lights and asbestos cement roofing sheets, account for more deaths as a result of falling from height than any other single cause.

“The risks of working on fragile roofs are well-known, but so too are the ways to manage those risks, and all parties involved with work on fragile roofs must ensure the work is correctly planned and managed to ensure the safety of all involved.”

For further information on working at height visit: http://www.hse.gov.uk/construction/safetytopics/fragile.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. www.hse.gov.uk
  2. More about the legislation referred to in this case can be found at: www.legislation.gov.uk/  and guidance at
  3. HSE news releases are available at http://press.hse.gov.uk

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