Home>Slips, Trips & Falls>Fall Prevention>Teenager falls through dairy farm roof
Home>Slips, Trips & Falls>Fall Protection>Teenager falls through dairy farm roof
Home>Slips, Trips & Falls>Slip Prevention>Teenager falls through dairy farm roof

Teenager falls through dairy farm roof

06 June 2023

A BODMIN dairy farm has been fined more than £60,000 after one of its workers sustained multiple injuries when he fell more than 20 feet through a roof on to a concrete floor.

Mike Rossiter, was just 18 when he was airlifted to Derriford hospital in Plymouth after the shed roof he was clearing gutters from gave way. As well as rupturing his spleen and liver, the farm worker also fractured several vertebrae. An additional fracture to his left elbow required surgery and a permanent plate in his arm.

“I was in hospital for two-and-a-half weeks,” he explained. “I have been left with permanent damage in my arm and no longer have full movement and I’m unable to lift and carry heavy things."

A keen rugby player before the incident, 20-year-old Mr Rossiter, went on to say that despite being back in work and fully-supported by his employer, he still fears for his long-term future in the industry.

“My employer has given me a job that doesn’t involve heavy lifting,” he said. “I don’t know how much longer I will be able to keep working in the farming industry as a result of my injuries."

Plymouth Magistrates Court heard that employees of C.P. Button Limited were clearing the gutters on the grain and silage pit shed roofs on 13 July 2021. Although they were using crawling boards, Mr Rossiter had stood on a fragile rooflight, which failed under his weight causing him to fall.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found the company failed to control the risk of falls. They failed to adequately assess the risks and did not have a safe system of work. Wider failings were identified in respect of the information, instruction, training, and supervision provided for the employees involved. HSE guidance can be found at: Agriculture: Preventing falls (hse.gov.uk)