Workers Caught Lifted Up In A Digger Bucket With No Helmets, Firm Fined £120,000

A British building firm was fined £120,000 after evidence showed two workers hanging out of the airborne bucket of a digger, according to HSE.

The builders were filmed while working on a luxurious housing development in Littleborough, Greater Manchester, in 2021.

The photo shows them fitting a stone on a new mansion while crouching in the shallow trough. Despite being around 20 feet in the air, neither wore a helmet.

The identities of the workers remain unknown.

The Villas housing development on Starring Road faced “repeated breaches” after The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) inspectors visited.

There were four visits between November 2018 and August 2021. The inspectors issued several notices regarding health and safety concerns, most notably inadequate scaffolding, insufficient fencing, and a lack of welfare facilities.

Inspectors said:

“Repeated breaches were found, including a lack of sufficient welfare, unsuitable controls for work at height, and inadequate protection from silica dust exposure.”

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Hoyle Developments, a firm from Edenfield Road, Rochdale, pleaded guilty to breaching health and safety regulations after the investigation was conducted.

The Health and Safety Executive inspector Mike Lisle told the media: “Health and safety should be an integral part of any business, not an afterthought, and having a clear health and safety policy and construction phase plan in place before work commences, can assist with ensuring this.”

Lisle added: “This proactive prosecution demonstrates that HSE will not hesitate to take proactive enforcement action against those that continuously fall below the required standards and demonstrate persistent poor health and safety.”

The gated estate features a small number of luxurious properties, which are priced up to £700,000 per unit.

The court action was taken following numerous warnings from health and safety inspectors over the previous years.

The hearing was held at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court. On 25 January 2023, Hoyle Developments Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act.

Hoyle Developments Limited received a £120,000 fine and was ordered to pay £3,165.15 in costs.

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