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Edinburgh contractor fined £3,600 after management failings on Galashiels site

28 Jan 10 An Edinburgh construction company has been fined a total of £3,600 for failing to ensure properly-trained staff were managing a construction site in Galashiels.

An Edinburgh construction company has been fined a total of £3,600 for failing to ensure properly-trained staff were managing a construction site in Galashiels.

Scotcare Preservation of Ettrick Road, Edinburgh, pleaded guilty to four health and safety charges at Selkirk Sheriff Court on Monday 18 January.

The company admitted that during work on a housing project in 2008 it failed to ensure the health, safety and welfare of their employees by failing to provide adequate supervision of workers.

It also admitted to not providing the site foreman with adequate health and safety training and failing to put adequate precautions in place to prevent falls from height, failing to provide adequate washing facilities and neglecting to ensure scaffolding was regularly inspected.

The company was prosecuted under Section 2(1) and Section 33(1)(a) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, Work at Height  Regulations 2005, Regulation 6(3) and the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, Section 33(1)(c) and two contraventions of Section 21 and 33(1) (g)

Scotcare also admitted failing to comply with two improvement notices served by HSE inspector Gordon McLelland in August 2008.

After the case McLelland said: "It is fortunate there was no accident as a result of the company's failings. This company had failed to heed previous health and safety advice which is extremely disappointing. 

"The risks from working on construction sites, including falls from height, are well known. Falls from height remain the largest cause of fatal and serious injuries in the construction industry.  Companies must ensure that their site management is trained and competent and able to control work on a site.

"We hope this case serves as a reminder to all companies using scaffolding that they need to ensure it is fit for purpose. Furthermore, HSE will not hesitate to recommend prosecution, even when there has been no incident, should conditions on site be poor enough to merit it."

"Action will be taken against those who persistently disregard the law and previous official advice about their legal responsibilities."

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