A loft company was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) yesterday, resulting in a fine of £5,000 and an order to pay costs. A man was injured when the scaffolding he was working on collapsed from underneath him, sending him crashing 20ft to the ground. The worker, Mr Pastura, suffered 2 broken ribs in the fall but the HSE said that he was “fortunate not to have been more seriously injured or even killed”.
Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard that the scaffolding was in place to reach the roof of the North London property to perform a loft conversion. However, the weight of the materials on the scaffolding was found by the HSE to be between 3-3.5 tonnes, which was much more than the structure could safely support. The HSE submitted that Loft Creations should have known that the two-storey property required a scaffold built to the specifications of a specialist structural engineer.
HSE Inspector Simon Hester said: “The collapse would not have occurred had the scaffold been designed by a competent specialist to carry loads of 3.5 tonnes with an overhanging cantilever to accommodate the bay window.
“That didn’t happen and Mr Pastura suffered a painful injury as a result – although he is perhaps fortunate not to have come off a lot worse.
“Lofty Creations failed to adequately plan and design the scaffold that collapsed; failed to manage the storage of heavy materials; and ultimately failed to protect its workforce.