Dufell Roofing Company Ltd, a Darlington based roofing company was sentenced today after an employee suffered a fracture to his back requiring surgery.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the injured person, Mr Stephen Merryweather, an employee of Dufell Roofing Company Ltd, was in the process of fitting new plywood boards over the top of existing wood wool slabs on a roof at a site in Morpeth on 15 April 2015. Two employees were in the process of positioning the second plywood board when the injured person fell four metres through one of the wood wool slabs onto the floor of the plant room, colliding with internal pipework.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuting told the court the firm should have identified that the roofs were potentially fragile and should have planned the work around this fact, with measures in place to prevent a fall through a fragile surface.

Dufell Roofing Company Limited of Alexander House, Faverdale Industrial Estate, Darlington pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 15(2) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 and was fined £25,000 with £24,572.84 costs, plus a victim surcharge of £120.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Andrea Robbins said: “This injury was easily prevented and the risk should have been identified”

Article source: www.hse.gov.uk

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Working at height remains one of the biggest causes of fatalities and major injuries in the UK. Common incidents include falls from ladders and through fragile surfaces.

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