February 25, 2024
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By CHARLOTTE BANKS

The fine for a roofing company was 881,000 PS in total. This is due to two incidents of serious injuries caused by falls.

Health and Safety Executive prosecuted Mitie Tilley Roofing Ltd for incidents in Newcastle and Swansea that occurred in 2019.

Billy Hewitt (60) fell seven metres from a roof of a Newcastle factory while fixing a skylight. He landed on the floor concrete below. After breaking his left wrist, pelvis and eye socket, he spent three weeks in the hospital.

Hewitt: “Four years after my accident, I’m not doing much with my time.

“I used to be a roofer, but my accident has changed everything. I can no longer work.”

The HSE claims that Mitie tilley did not plan or execute the project properly. Investigation revealed that work done at height was not properly evaluated as an independent piece of work. Hewitt’s fall occurred under a skylight that was not fitted with safety nets, but safety nets had been installed in other parts of the roof.

Mitie tilley, after a trial lasting two weeks in April 2023, was found guilty for violating the Health and Safety Act of 1974 and the Work at Height Regulations. The company received a PS575,000 fine and was ordered to pay PS84.940.08 for costs after a 3-day hearing in Newcastle Crown Court on 6 December.

The company received a fine at the same hearing for an incident that occurred on the 3rd of June 2019 in the Plasmarl Industrial Estate, Swansea. The 24-year-old worker for RM Scaffolding, who was on his back when he fell from a 20 foot high skylight onto the ground. The 24-year-old man fractured his leg and developed a blood clot on one of his major arteries. He needed to take long-term medications for this.

HSE determined that Mitie tilley, the principal contractor, did not plan, manage and monitor work performed by RM Scaffolding.

HSE found Paul Robinson to be a partner in RM Scaffolding who had neglected to plan his work properly, failed to provide fall protection for the roof and did not ensure that the staff he employed had the necessary skills, knowledge, and experience.

Mitie Tilley pleaded guilty for violating the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. The company received a fine of PS306,000, and was ordered to pay PS27.410.63 as costs.

Robinson admitted to violating the Work at Height Regulations of 2005. At Newcastle Crown Court, on Tuesday 5 December, he was ordered to perform 120 hours of community service without pay and to pay PS20.428,73 for costs.

HSE’s principal inspector John Heslop stated: “Too often, workers suffer serious injuries or even death as a consequence of falling through rooflights that are not properly protected or fall-prevention measures.

Both incidents were shocking and had an impact that lasted for those injured.

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