Two firms fined for safety failings at Motherwell site

HSETwo firms have been fined after a cold store collapsed and seriously injured two employees at a construction site in Motherwell.

St. Albans based John Sisk and Son and HIL Installations of Birkenhead were fined £64,000 and £71,000 respectively after both were found guilty of an offence under Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974.

Hamilton Sheriff Court heard how Sisk was appointed as principal contractor for fitting out a new distribution warehouse in Motherwell and HIL was subcontracted to design and develop the cold store structure.

The court heard how Guy Davies, 27, and Nayan Patel, 20, (both employed by Sisk’s subcontractor Sitewatch) were carrying out work on the partly built cold store on 12 October 2010.

However, the two men were injured when the roof lids of the cold store collapsed while they were working on them.

Mr Davies suffered serious fractures to his thigh bones and his right kneecap, while Mr Patel suffered two fractures to his right arm requiring a metal plate, and a number of fractures to his foot.

HSE principal inspector, Graeme McMinn, said: “The accident could have been prevented if Sisk had enforced their permit to work system and ensured that workers were not allowed access to the roof lid section until they received confirmation that the roof lid section had been installed correctly and was safe.

“HIL should have ensured that their sub-contractor had installed the connections between the roof lid and cold store wall in line with the design specifications. They should also have checked that these connections were safe before allowing Sisk access to the roof lids.”

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