Kent Contractors Fined £15,000 for Safety Dangers
Overview of incident
A company in our home county of Kent has been prosecuted for serious safety breaches after exposing workers to unnecessary dangers.
The Health and Safety Executive received photos from a member of the public showing the risks facing agency workers. The photos showed a man working on a stacked shipping container peaking at nine metres from the ground at one end and the other end directly above the sea. There was no fall protection in place.
Investigations found a risk assessment and a method of working had been provided by the company and stated that each container would be secured by an operator working from a mobile boom and wearing a fall arrest harness. The company failed to source a boom in time and then neglected the need to review the risk assessment to identify how the workers could access the containers safely without it.
Details of fine
European Active Projects Ltd was fined a total of £15,000 with £917 in costs after admitting breaching the Work at Height Regulations and the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations.
European Active Projects Ltd
Chatham Docks, Gillingham Gate, Kent, England
Medway Magistrates’ Court
The dangers of falling, and quite possibly sustaining fatal injuries, were very real and highlighted quite dramatically in the photos that were taken.
The company had a plan but then totally ignored it as soon as it became clear a mobile boom couldn’t be sourced in time. It failed to provide any suitable measures to make sure the container structure could be erected safely and allowed dangerous practices to take place on site.
European Active Projects’ failings were compounded by the lifting accident that had occurred recently and our advice should still have been ringing in their ears! – HSE inspector Joanne Williams