Surfacing contractor fined following fall from vehicle
Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 10:33
M&W Tarmacadam Contractors prosecuted after worker sustains life-changing injuries
KENDALL-based road surfacing firm M&W Tarmacadam Contractors Ltd have been fined £10,000 after one of their employees suffered life-changing injuries in a fall from a paving machine.
Dumfries Sheriff Court heard how, on 7 November 2016, Darren Mundell was standing on the bonnet of the machine to cut the branches of overhanging trees at Arkleton Estate, Langholm, Dumfriesshire, when he fell into the asphalt hopper. Mr Mundell fractured his back and damaged his spinal cord in the fall, causing permanent paralysis from the waist down.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive found that M&W Tarmacadam Contractors had failed to plan the task of cutting the overhanging branches, resulting in the employee using the bonnet of the paving machine, which was not a safe place to work.
The company pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 4 of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was fined £10,000.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector Kirstin Lynchahon said: ‘M&W’s failings resulted in serious and life-changing injuries that could have easily been prevented had the company planned the work at height.
‘Planning the branch-cutting activity would have included an assessment of the risks and either avoidance of working at height using long-reach tools or measures being put in place to prevent a fall.’