Scaffold Inspectors Prosecuted After Worker Falls
Two scaffold inspectors have recently been prosecuted after a worker fell through a structure that had been signed off as safe by the pair. The incident happened on the 26th of March 2014, where the 49-year old worker was working on a re-roofing project before stepping down from the roof onto a fixed scaffold.
However, while stepping down from the roof, he fell through a gap between the scaffolding platform and the building. The man suffered fracture injuries to his spine, as well as having to wear a back brace for eight weeks.
After an investigation, the HSE revealed that the pair had not carried out the relevant scaffold inspections and had falsified the certificates to show that the scaffold was safe to use. Both scaffold inspectors, Stephen Harper and Garry Arnold, pleaded guilty to safety breaches and were sentenced to 170 hours community service and ordered to pay £1,500 in costs.
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Could safetime® Have Prevented This?
safetime® uses a visible tagging system to supplement scaffold inspection reports. This is a useful way of ensuring those who need access to the scaffold know that it has been inspected correctly and therefore safe to use. safetime® has been designed carefully with fraudulent inspections in mind. Here’s how…
The pair in the above case had not even carried out a physical inspection of the scaffolding. With safetime®, the Inspect7 device acts as a 7-day countdown timer, which will notify you when an inspection is due. If an inspection is not carried out when it should be, the device will flash red to let users know not to use the scaffold, as well as send out an email notification. This ensures that inspectors cannot miss an inspection without anyone being aware that it has been missed and that the scaffold should not be used.
It’s also worth mentioning two key features of safetime® that help towards eradicating fraudulent inspections, geo-tagging and digital timestamping. Inspections can only be carried out by scanning the Inspect7 device using the safetime® app. This creates a digital timestamp of the inspection and a geo-location of the device. This ensures that all inspections are carried out on site and stops fraudulent inspections being carried out away from the scaffolding, e.g. back in the office.
safetime® – “Everyone has the right to know they are in safe hands”