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Site Manager Fined After Worker is Injured at Height

The manager of a construction site has been fined for safety breaches following an incident in which a worker was injured on site.

A worker suffered a number of strain injuries whilst attempting to cut a protruding piece of steel at height from a house build. St Albans Magistrates’ Court heard that site manager Edwin Heaney used an excavator to raise the worker, who was operating a handheld grinder; however he left the machine unattended. Whilst Mr Heaney was elsewhere, the bucket of the excavator jerked downwards throwing the worker off balance. The court heard how the worker threw the grinder out of harm’s way quickly and managed to grab hold of a nearby wall, preventing a fall. A colleague provided a ladder for the worker to climb down to ground level.

An investigation by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) found that the excavator was not appropriate equipment for carrying the worker and that the bucket attachment of the machine was not a suitable platform to work from. Furthermore, the inspector found that Mr Heaney had ‘failed to take reasonable care for the health and safety of others’.

After being found guilty of breaching Section 7(a) of the Health and Safety at Work Act, Edwin Heaney, 43, of How Wood, Park Street, Hertfordshire was fined a total of £1,000 and ordered to pay costs of £3,130.

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Source: Health & Safety Executive

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