£850,000 fine for H&S failures

    13 April 2018 | Rianda Markram

    £850,000 fine for H&S failures

    On 10 April 2018, HPAS Ltd (trading as Safestyle UK) pleaded guilty to breaching regulation 4(1) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. The company was fined £850,000 and ordered to pay £1,083 in costs to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) at Sheffield Magistrates' Court.

    What went wrong?

    On 1 March 2017, a window installer working for the HPAS was fitting a first floor bedroom window when the ladder he was climbing slipped. The worker fell over three metres and sustained injuries. The ladder had not been footed or tied.

    The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigated and found that the company's system for planning work at height was inadequate, and that it had failed to ensure that work was carried out in a safe manner. Instead of installing windows from inside the house, ladders were used in a way that constituted a serious risk to the installer. In addition, there was no system of monitoring or supervision in place and workers were left to their own devices.

    You can find more information on the rules around working at height from the HSE website.

    This feature was written in collaboration with the lawyers at Markel Law who regularly comment on SME related matters. You can stay up to date with the latest legal changes on the Markel Law Blog, written in plain English, so that you understand the implications that is has for you as a small business owner.

    This feature was written in collaboration with the lawyers at Markel Law, who regularly comment on SME related matters. You can stay up to date with the latest legal changes on the Markel Law Blog, written in plain English, so that you understand the implications that is has for you as a small business owner.

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