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Rhondda Carpenter Left With Serious Injuries After Workplace Accident

Jul 25, 2008
Most people spend a large proportion of their lives at work. Health and Safety at work is designed to try to ensure that adequate precautions are taken to protect those working in or visiting a workplace from ill health or accidents. You don't have to search too hard online or in the daily papers though to find plenty of examples of people who have suffered as a result of inadequate or even non-existent health and safety measures at work.

There are many thousands of accidents in the workplace every year, hundreds of which prove fatal while many result in major injury; injury and death affecting not just workers but also members of the public. In the UK over 7 million working days a year are lost to workplace injury according to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Common causes of injury in the workplace include:

* Slipping, tripping or falling (which account for over a third of all injuries, nearly half of which occurred in the construction, building and plant maintenance sector)

* Lifting handling or carrying

* Being struck by a moving vehicle or object

* Coming into contact with harmful substances

* Electrical accidents

In the case of Rhondda carpenter David Morgan, he was left with serious career threatening injuries after falling 5 metres from an extension ladder. Working on a loft conversion Mr Morgan was carrying an 8ft x 4ft piece of chipboard weighing approximately 25kg when he fell, severely breaking an ankle, a wrist and suffering facial injuries when the wood he was carrying hit him.

Though his employer, loft conversion company Allied Welsh Ltd, had been given previous Health and Safety advice from the HSE, on this occasion it went unheeded and they hadn't ensured a safe and suitable method of getting materials from ground level up to the loft space where they were working.

There had been a systematic failure to provide safe working practices according to Health and Safety inspectors. Allied Welsh Ltd pleaded guilty at Bridgend Magistrates' Court to a charge under section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and was fined 25,000. They were also ordered to pay costs of 8,600 at Crown Court. It is hoped that this case serves as a warning to others employers to make safety priority while working at height, and using ladders.

As well as being personally devastating, work-related injuries in a range of industry sectors including food retail, food manufacturing, construction building and plant maintenance and catering and hospitality cost society billions of pounds in largely preventable expenses.

Identified by the EU as one of the most important social policy sectors this decade, the British Safety Council along with high profile industry leaders and the Health and Safety Executive are committed to promoting corporate social responsibility, lifelong learning and achieving health, safety and environmental best practice in the workplace. In particular young people who are more liable to the risk of accidents have been identified as needing greater support and health and safety training.
About the Author
We deal in a range of claims, including personal injury claims and compensation. Please visit http://www.1stclaims.co.uk for further information.
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