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£15,000 fine for construction worker's roof fall

23 Apr 10 An Aberdeenshire construction firm has been fined £15,000 after an employee broke his leg when he fell three metres from the roof of an Aberdeenshire farm building.

An Aberdeenshire construction firm has been fined £15,000 after an employee broke his leg when he fell three metres from the roof of an Aberdeenshire farm building.

Robert Peter Mackie from Turriff, who was trading as RDM Engineering at the time of the incident, pleaded guilty to of breaching section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

Banff Sherriff Court heard how, on 20 November 2008, an employee was fixing a roof sheet onto the roof of a new potato store at Little Hilton Farm, near Turriff, Aberdeenshire, when he slipped and fell from the edge of the roof. He landed on an adjacent roof below, breaking his leg in two places.

There were no safety measures in place, such as guard-rails to prevent falls from this section of the roof and the work at height had not been properly planned and controlled by Mr Mackie.

Following the case, HSE inspector Liz Standen said: "All employers carrying out work at height must ensure that the risks are fully assessed, the job is thoroughly planned and that suitable equipment is used. There is no excuse for leaving roofs under construction unguarded against falls.

"I find it very frustrating that people continue to be needlessly injured and killed because of a lack of basic planning and simple precautions.

"HSE statistics show that during 2008/09 10 people died and 1,423 were injured in Scotland while working in construction. These incidents are nearly always preventable when using the right equipment for the job."

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