The Consequences of Poor Health and Safety

Poor Health and Safety

The Consequences of Poor Health and Safety

This week’s blog looks at another lone worker incident. A 63-year-old fell to their death due to a breach in the Work at Height Regulations 2005. Find out what happened below.

John Flowers, 63-years old

John Flowers was an experienced linesman who fell to his death whilst trying to trim ivy away from overhead power lines. The incident took place in November 2013. It is believed that he cut through his work positioning strap.

At court, it was stated that linesmen weren’t provided with any details on how the work was to be completed. They also weren’t provided with any information on the vegetation clearance survey. That survey was actually undertaken six weeks prior to the incident. John’s employers, Electricity North West, were found guilty of breaching Regulation 4(1) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005. They were fined £900,000.

After the court hearing, HSE Inspector Rose Leese-Weller stated: “Electricity North West failed to ensure that working at height was properly planned, appropriately supervised and carried out in a manner that was safe. Had these steps been taken we may not have had this tragic outcome.”

Lesson Learnt?

The jury recognised some effectiveness in the company’s risk assessment process and in their compliance with the Health and Safety at Work Act. Therefore, Electricity North West was found not guilty of two other charges.

They are now doing everything they can to provide a safe workplace. Don’t want this to happen at your organisation? Contact us now for more information on how we can help protect your workforce.