Client and contractors fined over multiple CDM breaches
Wednesday 2nd May 2018
From the archive: Just so you know, this article is more than 3 years old.
Taylor Grange Developments (TGD) was the client for the project, which involved demolishing and clearing the redundant Kilmacolm Institute and shops, and replacing them with a new building comprising two ground floor rental units, residential flats above and a basement car park.
TGD had engaged Allied Contracts to act as the PC, which had appointed Altan Plant Hire to carry out the demolition work.
Paisley Sheriff Court was told that on 2 June 2015 inexperienced and untrained workers were demolishing the building by hand when an internal wall and ceiling gave way and fell on one of them. Richard O'Hagen was taken to hospital with fractures to his neck, back and ankle.
A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation found that Altan Plant Hire had failed to provide a safe system of work as the workers were demolishing the structure with hand tools rather than mechanical equipment.
The company had failed to ensure the electrical supply had been isolated prior to work starting and had not planned for the safe removal of asbestos cement sheets.
In addition, there was no edge protection around holes in the floor and the welfare facilities were inadequate, the HSE said.
It found that PC Allied Contracts had not appointed a suitable and experienced demolition contractor and had failed to regularly monitor the safety and health standards on site and ensure the provision of adequate welfare facilities.
The investigation also found that as the client, TGD should have taken steps to ensure that Allied Contracts complied with its legal duties.
Altan Plant Hire was fined £20,000 after it admitted breaching regs 15(7) and 20(1) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 for employing workers who had not been trained and for failing to safely plan the demolition work.
Allied Contracts pleaded guilty to breaching regs 13(1) and 13(4) of the same regulations for failing to provide an induction session for workers, and for not planning, managing and monitoring the work to ensure it was carried out safely. It was fined £6,000.
TGD admitted breaching regs 4(1), 4(2)(a) and 4(2)(b) of the CDM Regulations 2015, which cover client duties for managing projects. It was fined £4,500.
HSE inspector Graeme McMinn said: "Altan Pant Hire used inexperienced and untrained workers to demolish the three-storey building. They wrongly decided to use hand methods to demolish the building when remote demolition by machine was a much safer option.
"Allied Contracts failed to appoint a competent contractor who could carry out the work safely and then failed to make any checks on how the work was done.
"Taylor Grange Developments, as client, set the tone for the project by failing to make suitable arrangements to ensure the demolition work would be carried out safely and failing to ensure that the principal contractor they appointed was complying with their legal duties.
"In addition, none of these duty holders ensured that the workers on site had access to toilets, washing and canteen facilities. This incident is a stark reminder of what can happen when clients, principal contractors and contractors fail to comply with their legal duties."
Leeside Cut & Core Contractors had been appointed to demolish stud wall partitions and blockwork at the two-storey office building at Goulds Hill in Mallow, County Cork between 21 January and 6 February 2015.The office block, which was built in the 1970s, contained asbestos insulating board (AIB) ceiling tiles containing amosite (brown asbestos) and chrysotile (white asbestos) on both the ground and the first floor. The floor tiles and bitumen also contained chrysotile.
The telecommunications giant was working on part of Transport for London’s (TfL) strategic road network in Bishopsgate in the City of London last August when it failed to properly signpost and guard the work area. It had also used the wrong traffic management methods, putting pedestrians, motorists and cyclists at risk.TfL, which brought the prosecution, said despite its “repeated demands” BT had not taken measures to improve safety at the site.
Coast & Country Construction and Paul Humphries Architects have been fined a total of £170,000. Exeter Magistrates’ Court was told that in 2016 a concern was raised about dangerous work practices at Manor Lodge Residential Home in Exmouth, Devon, where a large timber frame extension was being built.Inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) visited the site on 1 March that year and found workers were at risk of falls from height, slips and trips and wood dust exposure.
As one of the UK’s biggest construction clients and the nation’s largest listed commercial property company, Landsec accords asbestos management primary importance.“If there is an asbestos issue on one of our sites, it would be bad news, so it’s in our interest to do the right thing,” says David Tucker, health, safety and security business partner.
Wessex Building Services was the main contractor on site at Mountbatten Leisure Centre when the Wessex Insulation employee was installing insulation to new ventilation ductwork on the leisure centre’s roof on 17 December 2015. The worker fell through the fragile structure and sustained six fractures to his back. He has since made a full recovery.