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Scaffolder in court over worker’s fractured skull

Posted in: Workplace Injuries 

A scaffolder is to receive a four-month prison sentence after his faulty equipment seriously injured a worker. 27-year-old Mark Jones, from Darlaston, had been operating a ‘gin wheel’ (a metal pulley wheel) when it fell seven meters from the scaffold and struck him on the head, fracturing his skull.

Mr Jones had been working for a subcontractor on site when the accident happened.  He had been installing lead flashing on a school roof using lifting equipment installed by Christopher Alan Harvey.  It was heard that Mr Jones had been loading materials from the ground, weighing 4kg, when the wheel broke and fell seven meters to where he was standing.

£2,500 in compensation

It was discovered during a Health and Safety Executive report that Mr Harvey had failed to secure the gin wheel to the scaffold properly.  An inspection found that no scaffold fittings had been used and that the supporting structure was ineffectively braced.

Mr Harvey pleaded guilty to breaching Section 10(1) of The Work at Height Regulations 2005, for which he received a four-month prison sentence, suspension for twelve months and he was also ordered to pay Mr Jones £2,500 in compensation plus £527 in costs.

HSE Inspector Edward Fryer said: “This incident was entirely preventable and could easily have been avoided had Mr Harvey followed the published guidance to attach the wheel securely.

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