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Building firm fined for worker’s fall

20 Dec 13 A Kent building maintenance company has been fined for safety failings after a worker fell through a fragile garage roof.

The 39-year-old man suffered brain injuries and was left partially deaf following the fall at a garage compound in Bourne Road, Bexley, on 20 January 2012.

The worker, a Bulgarian national living in Hornchurch, also fractured his shoulder and lost his peripheral vision as a result of the incident. While in hospital, he contracted MRSA and has not yet been able to return to work.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard this week that he was carrying out repair work to a corrugated garage roof as a self-employed builder for Bexley based Platinum Property Maintenance Ltd. While clearing moss and debris from the roof with a colleague, the fragile corrugated sheeting gave way and he fell nearly three metres to the concrete floor below.

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) investigated and found that no safety equipment, such as harnesses, scaffolding or boards, had been provided by the firm to prevent a fall. In addition, a risk assessment had not been carried out, no documented system of work was in place for roof repairs and there was a lack of adequate supervision.

Platinum Property Maintenance Ltd, of The Cooperage, Old Bexley Business Park, Bourne Road, Bexley, Kent, was fined £8,000 and ordered to pay £6,000 in costs after pleading guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

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