30 May 2015
Blackburn Worker Killed After Fall From Height
On 29th January, 2012, Ivars Bahmanis fell eight metres to his death at a mill in Blackburn.
The 55-year-old Lithuanian man was installing metal brackets for new roof joists. He fell from the wall of the former canal works building on Manner Sutton Street, less than a mile away from the railway station.
The father of two should never have been asked to carry out any work at height around the building because he was an unskilled worker. He was left to get on with the hazardous refurbishment work alone.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation that followed found that there was a complete lack of safety measures in place. Mr Bahmanis’s horrific accident was not the only accident at work that has taken place on the construction site at the mill. The investigation discovered that, on the same site, another Latvian man had previously broken his leg falling from height. The company failed to report this incident as well.
The employers were trying to save money by employing unskilled workers instead of competent contractors with the right training and experience. They were hit with massive fines and prison sentences for breaching work at height regulations as they had failed to plan the work at height and knew that the refurbishment was being carried out in an unsafe manner by unskilled workers.
Roof accidents account for around 20% of fatal accidents in construction. It therefore makes perfect sense that work at height should be avoided whenever it is possible to carry out the work from ground level.
If the work must be completed at height then the employer must plan the work thoroughly. Clear instructions must be given to all construction workers. Everyone working at height should also be given the right training and supervision and not be left alone to get on with it as Mr Bahmanis was.
If you have been hurt in an accident at a building site which wasn’t your fault you have the right to make a construction site accident compensation claim. The money would come from your employer’s liability insurance and they cannot treat you unfairly for making a claim.
Call our No Win, No Fee Personal injury Solicitors on freephone 0800 916 9046 or contact us online.