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Volvo Group UK fined £900,000 after employee injured falling off step ladder
Photo Credit To Gosheshe

Volvo Group UK fined £900,000 after employee injured falling off step ladder

Volvo Group UK fined £900,000 after employee was seriously injured falling from a step ladder

The Volvo Group UK Limited has pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. They were fined £900,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,820 plus a £150 victim surcharge.

Westminster Magistrates Court was told about a worker who was servicing a delivery truck and whilst repairing the driver’s access rope for the cab he fell, striking his head and losing consciousness.

The worker was placed in a medically-induced coma for two weeks and is still struggling with ongoing complications and is unable to return to work.

The incident occurred 17th September 2015 and Volvo UK admitted they had not trained their staff in proper working at height procedures including how to select, inspect and use access equipment for work at heights.

The worker’s accident was found to have been because the anti-slip feet of the ladder were worn out and although the ladders were not even Volvo’s property, they had a duty of care and should have ensured that the ladder was fit for purpose.

The Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) Inspector Nick Wright stated “This worker suffered life changing injuries that could have been prevented by simple health and safety precautions. For two weeks, his family prepared for the worst as he was in an induced coma to help manage a swelling on his brain.”

The HSE representative commented “This case is not about banning ladders, on many occasions they are the right equipment to use when working at height, it is about companies ensuring they properly maintain their work at height equipment and train their workers on how to inspect them and select the correct tools for the job. As this case shows, even a fall from a relatively small height can have devastating consequences.”

Health & Safety in the UK

In the UK, the health and safety laws are very strict with all workers entitled to work in environments where risks to their health and safety are properly controlled. The primary responsibility for this is down to employers, although workers do have a duty to take care of their own health and safety and that of others who may be affected by the employer’s actions at work.

Employers have duties under health and safety law to assess all risks in the workplace to address and mitigate all risks that might cause harm in the workplace, but workers must co-operate with employers and co-workers to help everyone meet their legal requirements.

If workers think their employer is exposing them to risks or is not carrying out their legal duties regards to health and safety, and if this has been pointed out to them but no satisfactory response has been received, workers can make a complaint to HSE.

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About The Author

Anthony has worked in the construction industry for many years and looks forward to bringing you news and stories on the highways industry from all over the world.

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