Fife contractor sentenced after subcontractor falls 15 feet from temporary platform



A Fife building contractor has been fined £5,000 after a subcontractor sustained multiple fractures and a brain injury in a fall from height.

Dalgety Bay-based Brebner and Williamson Limited admitted to being responsible for the incident where self-employed subcontractor John Niven fell 15 feet from a youngman board, which had been used to create a temporary platform.

Perth Sheriff Court heard that on 29 July 2016 Mr Niven was working on a new build at Plot 1, Station Road, Crook of Devon, Kinross. A youngman board was used to create a temporary platform to give access to the roof in an area without scaffolding. Mr Niven was standing on the youngman board when it slipped, causing him to fall onto a concrete floor slab below.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found Brebner and Williamson failed to properly supervise the work at height, to ensure scaffold surrounded the full perimeter of the house under construction, and to ensure a suitable working platform and fall protection measures were in place.

Brebner and Williamson pleaded guilty to breaching the Work at Height Regulations 2005, Regulation 4 and Section 33(1)(c) of the Health and Safety at Work Etc. Act 1974 and was fined £5,000.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Gillian Anderson said: “Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work-related fatalities and severe injuries in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known.

“Companies should be aware that HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”



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