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Builder prosecuted after putting his son at risk

Posted in: Employer Negligence Workplace Injuries 

A builder has been prosecuted after he took his 10-year-old son onto unsafe scaffolding when working on a property in Merseyside. The 51-year-old man – who cannot be identified – has been prosecuted with community service following the incident. The Health and Safety Executive witnessed the incident, photographed it and raised it as a case.

After the passing HSE inspector witnessed the young boy on the scaffolding in February, six meters off the ground, the inspector ordered the builder to dismantle the scaffolding and then took the case to court. Magistrates ordered the builder to carry out a total of 80 hours’ community service.

Had to shimmy across a narrow plank of scaffolding

The boy photographed by the inspector was assisting his dad at work during his half-term holiday. Repairs were being carried out on the house and Liverpool Magistrates’ Court heard that the boy had to shimmy across a narrow plank of scaffolding and climb a ladder where his dad waited for him. The scaffolding was extremely unsafe; no boards had been fitted around the edge of the scaffolding to stop tools or material falling to street level – which could have caused a very serious injury.

Following the hearing, Insp Matt Greenly said: “Building sites have the potential to be dangerous places if the proper health and safety procedures aren’t followed, with dozens of deaths reported in the industry every year. They’re certainly no place for a ten-year-old boy.

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