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Demolition firm fined after workers fall from excavator

Prosecution

Cheshire Demolition and Excavation Contractors Ltd receive £134,000 fine plus costs

A DEMOLITION contractor has been fined after two workers fell from an attachment on an excavator, resulting in serious injuries.

Greater Manchester Magistrates’ Court heard how, on 15 November 2016, Macclesfield-based Cheshire Demolition and Excavation Contractors Ltd were demolishing a derelict nightclub in Alderley Edge, Cheshire.

The two workers had climbed into a pick bin and were being lifted by the excavator when the bin suddenly released from the arm of the machine, causing both men to be ejected from the bin and fall several metres on to a pile of bricks and rubble.

Both sustained serious injuries. One worker suffered a broken back and the other sustained a fractured skull.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that Cheshire Demolition and Excavation Contractors did not properly plan the work and failed to provide suitable access equipment. The company had provided a scissor-lift on site but decided to remove it from the site prior to the incident, leaving the operatives with no other means of accessing areas at height.

Cheshire Demolition and Excavation Contractors pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and were  fined £134,000 with £6,303.04 costs.

After the hearing HSE inspector David Argument said: ‘These risks could so easily have been avoided if the work at height was properly planned and appropriately supervised. Companies should be aware that the HSE will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.’

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