This article was published on September 1st, 2016
A construction company has been fined £110k after the Health and Safety Executive discovered numerous failings during an inspection.
The inspection of the construction site was unannounced and the HSE assessed an area which sited 54 partly built timber framed buildings. They found that, due to the type of materials being used and their proximity to each other, there was a significant fire risk which had not been planned for or managed by the company.
The Magistrates’ Court heard that the investigation found there was significant fire hazard and there would be serious risk to employees and members of the public due to the potential speed and intensity of a blaze.
According to the HSE’s findings there were numerous ignition points and insufficient fire prevention and control measures in place to detect fire, alert people and to stop a fire getting out of control.
As an additional danger there were no procedures in place to prevent workers from being struck or crushed by construction vehicles.
The construction company pleaded guilty to breaching Regulations 27 and 29 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015, and was fined £100,000 (£40,000 and £60,000 respectively for each breach).
An HSE inspector said: “……. had been given plenty of warnings about fire-safety and traffic risks in the recent past, including from HSE.
“Timber-frame houses are perfectly safe once they’re finished and protected, but when under construction they can be very dangerous. Stringent fire-safety standards need to be in place well before the build starts, and then maintained and monitored”.
Employers have a duty to comply with Health and Safety laws and regulations and provide their employees with a safe, accident free environment and if they don’t fulfill this then they are breaking the law, as well as putting you at risk. If you have an accident at work as a result then you have a right to file an injury at work claim against them.
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