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Construction firms fined £140k for health and safety failures

Posted: June 27th, 2011 by Eloise comment-icon Comments disabled

A construction firm and a subcontractor have been fined more than £140,000 after it was revealed that safety failures at a construction site in Bristol led to a man suffering severe brain damage.

Richard Chodliewicz, 53, was working on a lift installation at the new Radisson Blu Hotel site in Bristol in July 2008 when the incident occurred. He was at the bottom of the lift shaft with a colleague, whilst another man was stationed at the top of the shaft 18 stories up. The man at the top was raising a 17lb scaffolding tube up the lift shaft when the piano wire holding it came untied, causing the tube to fall onto Mr Chodliewicz, hitting him on the head.

As a result of his injuries, Mr Chodliewicz suffered permanent brain damage and now requires round-the-clock care.

Two companies were prosecuted over the incident – main contractor Miller Construction and subcontractor and lift engineering firm Hoistway. Bristol Crown Court ruled that more safety measures should have been implemented, including health and safety training, a more thorough risk assessment and better site management.

Miller Construction was fined £40,000 plus court costs of £17,232, whilst Hoistway was ordered to pay £70,000 in fines and £14,616 in court costs.

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