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Never Underestimate Slips and Trips

As an employer, you have a responsibility to ensure the health and safety of your employees is maintained to the best of your ability. This can be done in a number of ways but most commonly through risk assessment to prevent injuries that can have a major impact on both you as an employer and also the employee's quality of life.

An example of this where an employer has become liable for an injury in the workplace, occurred 12th August 2016. A contractor from Kingswinford Engineering Co had been hired to repair a section of pipework on the roof of a warehouse owned by James Durrans & Sons' when he slipped and fell, banging his head. The worker has suffered permanent blindness in one eye and blurred vision in the other resulting from the head injury.

Neither company had undertaken a suitable and sufficient risk assessment, nor had they agreed a safe system of work for the repair of the pipework which required access to the roof.

Kingswinford Engineering Co pleaded guilty to a breach in section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and has been fined £18,000 and ordered to pay costs of £9,000.

James Durrans & Sons' has been fined £100,000 and ordered to pay costs of £20,000 after pleading guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

This case highlight the need for suitable and sufficient risk assessment as well as proper management systems for overseeing contractors.

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