Companies fined after worker injured in fall from heightHSE logo

Stuart Barnes Limited and its client, Aster Property Limited, have both been sentenced after an employee fell through a fragile roof whilst at work.

Weymouth Magistrates’ Court heard that on 5 January 2016, 27-year-old Luke Maslen was working to replace the roofing on garages owned by the client. He fell almost two metres through the garage roof onto flooring below. Mr Maslen suffered a serious fracture to the upper spine as a result of the fall.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the work was not properly planned, appropriately supervised or carried out in a safe manner when the incident occurred. The investigation also found Aster Property Limited, as the client, had failed in its duty to control how the work was carried out and to ensure any contractors they hired would carry out the work safely. The work was done under the control of Stuart Barnes Limited who failed to plan the work properly and in a safe manner. It was found that some of the employees were trained in window fitting not roof work.

Aster Property Limited of Horton Avenue, Cannings Hill, Devizes, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, and has been fined £14,600 and ordered to pay costs of £5,015.75.

Stuart Barnes Limited of Portland Road, Weymouth, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 4 (1)(a) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005, and has been fined £8,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,015.75.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Allison George said:

“This incident could so easily have been avoided by simply carrying out correct control measures and safe working practices.

“Falls from height remain one of the most common causes of work-related fatalities/injuries in this country and the risks associated with working at height are well known.”