Suspended jail term for builder after worker fatally injured in fall

A builder has been given a suspended jail term after a construction worker was fatally injured in a fall from a scaffold platform.

Construction worker Richard Carrington, 69, was on the platform about 1.4 metres high, building a wall for a house extension in the village of Nassington, near Peterborough, when he fell on December 19, 2018. He was taken to hospital and died two days later.

Julian Mark Croft, of Market Place, Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire, was the builder in charge of the work and the scaffold platform was owned and had been set up by him.

Peterborough Crown Court heard that the platform was constructed utilising scaffolding boards, spanning a gap between two scaffold tower sections, that were each resting on the ground.

Mr Carrington fell from the scaffold platform to the concrete floor of the new extension, suffering injuries to the back of his head.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that the scaffold platform was missing guard-rails, leaving no preventative measures to prevent falling, and the platform had a large quantity of construction materials stored on it, presenting a serious risk of a trip.

Mr Croft failed to ensure that work at height, under his control, was properly planned, appropriately supervised, and carried out in a manner which was safe. As a result, he failed to take suitable and sufficient measures to prevent, so far as was reasonably practicable, any person falling a distance liable to cause personal injury.

He pleaded guilty to contravening Regulations 4(1) and 6(3) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was sentenced to nine months imprisonment suspended for two years and ordered to pay costs of £9,089 at Peterborough Crown Court on 15 July 2022.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Mark Welsh, said: “This was a terrible incident that could have been prevented if the work had been adequately planned and considered by the defendant.

“The use of a working platform incorporating suitable guard rails and ensuring that materials were not excessively placed on the platform, could have stopped this fall from occurring and ensured that Mr Carrington was still here today.”

Notes to Editors:


  1. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. We prevent work-related death, injury and ill health through regulatory actions that range from influencing behaviours across whole industry sectors through to targeted interventions on individual businesses. These activities are supported by globally recognised scientific expertise.
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