London council had been “repeatedly warned” about open inspection pit
18th January 2018
The accident happened in the south-east London borough of Lewisham at the Wearside Service Centre, which provides local businesses with commercial waste and recycling services.
Southwark Crown Court was told the woman fell and struck her head while work was being carried out on the premises.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that Lewisham council had disregarded recommendations from an independent safety and health consultant to put guards around or over the inspection pits.
It had also ignored HSE guidance on preventing falls into pits.
The London Borough of Lewisham was fined £150,000 and ordered to pay costs of £65,000 on 11 January.
HSE inspector Ian Shearring said: "[The council] had been repeatedly warned of the risk and what they needed to do, and have been held to account for failing to take adequate action to protect the safety of persons visiting their site."