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Fine for roofing contractor after fatal fall

11 January 2023

THE HEALTH and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) has successfully led a prosecution against an Enniskillen based roofing contractor.

The prosecution follows the death of a self-employed roofing contractor on site, who fell from height during the re-roofing of an outbuilding on a County Fermanagh farm.

At Enniskillen Magistrate Court, Mr James Callaghan pleaded guilty to a single health and safety offence and was fined £1,000.

The HSENI investigation found that the self-employed contractor died from his injuries after falling over three metres onto a concrete floor during the construction work that took place on 15 May 2020. At the time of the incident, both contractors were walking across the roof structure when a wooden purlin broke causing both men to fall.

HSENI Inspector Gavin Rowan said, “Falls from height have resulted in many serious injuries and deaths across Northern Ireland construction sites. Contractors have a legal responsibility to ensure work is properly planned, managed and monitored.

“Falls from and through roof structures are avoidable. Control measures are readily available within the construction industry to ensure workers are protected. The failure of wooden roof purlins is a common cause of falls from height. Workers should always avoid having to work on roof structures and should consider the use of alternative access equipment.”

The investigation determined that no appropriate measures were put in place to prevent falls from height during the construction work.