Company fined after scaffolding collapses at school
A scaffolding company has been fined after scaffolding it had erected collapsed onto a neighbouring primary school.
Cardiff Magistrates’ Court heard Swain Scaffolding Limited had erected scaffolding 7m high and 8m long at the gable end of a residential property in Penarth, Vale of Glamorgan. On 5 May 2017 at approximately 1.30pm, the scaffold collapsed landing on a single story roof above the playground of a neighbouring school.
At the time of the collapse, a group of nursery children were in the playground only a few metres away and minutes before the collapse the playground had been full of children playing after their lunch break.
An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the scaffolding was not designed or installed to withstand foreseeable loads. It was not tied to the adjacent building, nor did it have adequate buttressing or rakers and was essentially a freestanding structure. The investigation found that it was almost inevitable that the scaffolding would collapse, even in unremarkable weather conditions.
Swain Scaffolding Limited of Heol Y Nant, Rhiwbina, Cardiff was found guilty of breaching Regulation 19(2) of the Construction Design and Management Regulations and was fined £24,000 and ordered to pay £3452.50 in costs.