Worker Sustains Injuries from Avoidable Ladder Fall

An accident which took place on a construction site in Leicester in The United Kingdom was both unfortunate and unnecessary because the incident was totally preventable. A worker was injured when he fell off a ladder on the site, when instead he should have been standing on scaffolding.

Scaffolding would have removed the risk of working from a ladder. It is obvious that either a hazard identification and risk assessment did not take place or it did take place but its findings were ignored. It is important that once employers identify hazards and assess the risk associated with them, these hazards be eliminated if necessary. In this case it was necessary and feasible to remove the hazard of the ladder, and replace it with something less hazardous, in this case the scaffold however this was not done which subsequently led to the injury of the worker.

The incident resulted in the builder being fined after the workman suffered multiple injuries after tumbling 6metres to the ground while repairing a window on the second floor of a building.

Read what happened according to an excerpt from a post on www.ppconstructionsafety.com

ladderguideThe injured man was working from a ladder extended to just below the window. When climbing down the ladder he fell from the ladder to the patio below. He was airlifted to hospital with head injuries, five fractures to his spine and a fractured pelvis and wrist.

Leicester Magistrates were told that the incident happened when the worker was cutting out and replacing the sill and glazing on a small window in the second floor attic gable wall. HSE investigators found a suitable tower scaffold was on site that could have been used to remove the risk of working from a ladder.

Source: http://www.ppconstructionsafety.com/newsdesk/2013/09/04/ladder-fall-caused-life-changing-injuries/

The company was fined and ordered to pay costs after pleading guilty to breaching regulation however this does not make up for the fact that the worker has suffered serious pain and suffering as a result of the incident.

Authorities later explained that the worker was so seriously hurt that he had to use a walking frame and was unable to climb stairs for five months. The course of his life has been altered by this and he will never be able to return to his normal job, all this despite the fact that the incident could have been avoided.

What makes this case even worse is that there was suitable equipment on site and the principal contractor who was in control of the work had a responsibility to make sure that it was put in place.

Principal contractors should not assume that they do not need to be concerned about the safety of casual workers on site. Whether workers are permanent, temporary or casual, experienced or apprentice workers, employers have a responsibility to provide them with a safe system of work and safe work environment.

These workers also need to be trained on general construction safety training. Luckily the White Card can be completed conveniently online with minimal expense.

Check out more safety related articles for construction workers

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