HSE fines two Cambridgeshire companies after fall

The Health and Safety Executive has chosen to prosecute two firms based in Cambridgeshire after an employee fell from height and broke his back, accident claim experts recently reported.

Anthony Strong, employed as a pipe fitter by Cambs Compressor Engineering Ltd, had been conducting work in Sutton at the Anson Packaging plant located in the Elean Business Park as part of a moulding machine installation when the incident that led to his personal injury claims occurred.  The twenty four year old, who was fitting pipe work at the time over a suspended ceiling in a roof void above ground, was traveling along a crawl board in order to reach the position needed to carry out his work, but as he did so, he fell, plummeting to the factory floor below, a drop of more than six metres.

Mr Strong sustained severe personal injury from the fall, including a fractured spine, several broken ribs, and a fractured skull as well.  In the wake of the incident, an HSE investigation found that, while the pipe fitter had been given a safety harness, he had not been able to use it in an effective manner due to the roof void’s lack of attachment points.

After making an admission of breaking the Health and Safety Work at Work Act, Anson Packaging was given a fine of more than £50,000 in a hearing at Cambridge Crown Court.  Cambs Compressor Engineering was also fined for breaching both the Work at Height Regulations and the Health and Safety at Work Act to the tune of more than £18,000.

According to official personal injury compensation figures, nearly 4,000 workers sustained severe injuries in falls from height in 2010.

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