Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

hseA Southwark-based construction business has been ordered to pay almost £130,000 in costs and fines after it pleaded guilty to serious health and safety breaches on a work site led to life-threatening injuries to one of its workers.

Habitat Construction LLP, a firm that specialises in construction work, was heavily fined and ordered to pay the prosecution’s costs by the Southwark Crown Court after a 38-year-old worker suffered damage to his spinal cord in the accident in July 2011.

The worker – who does not wish to be named for personal reasons – was part of a team of employees working on transforming two former Victorian hostels into four single residences. During the course of the work the windows had to be removed from the buildings and, as the Health and Safety Executive (“HSE”) later found, this work was carried out in a haphazard and uncontrolled manner, with no controls or guards being put in place to prevent people from falling through the open apertures. This meant – in some cases – that these openings were unguarded for a period of four to six weeks.

On 1 July 2011, the worker was attempting to connect a power supply when he stumbled backwards and fell through one of areas where a window was missing. This led to the worker falling approximately 25 feet to a concrete floor below, suffering severe damage to his spinal cord. This means that the worker is no longer able to walk and has  had to adjust to life in a wheelchair, as well as experiencing significant emotional trauma.

The Health and Safety Executive was notified of the accident and sought to investigate. The HSE’s investigation found that there had been several breaches of health and safety by Habitat Construction LLP, including a clear failure to guard the missing windows to prevent injury to employees or sub-contractors. The HSE therefore recommended that the partnership be prosecuted for failure to comply with UK health and safety laws.

The case came to the Southwark Crown Court on 22 May 2014, with Habitat Construction LLP charged with a single breach of s.2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974. The business pleaded guilty to this charge and was fined £110,000, as well as being ordered to pay the prosecution’s costs of £16,620.

Chris Hadrill, an employment solicitor at Redmans, commented on the court case: “Businesses have obligations under health and safety legislation to take reasonable steps to ensure the health, safety, and welfare of its employees at work. The HSE and the Southwark Crown Court clearly felt in this instance that the business had not taken these reasonable steps.”

About

Redmans Employment Team deal with employment matters for both employers and employees, including drafting employment contracts and policies, advising employers and employees on compromise agreements, handling day-to-day HR issues, advising on restructures, and handling Employment Tribunal cases for both employers and employees Call 020 3397 3603 to speak to one of the members of our employment team or email us on enquiries@redmans.co.uk. Redmans have offices in Richmond, Chiswick, Hammersmith, Fulham, Kingston, Wimbledon, Ealing, Kings Cross and Marylebone (meetings strictly by appointment only).

Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

Share →

Our awards

Request a callback

Your name

Your email

Your telephone number

Contact us

Please feel free to discuss your own position and concerns. Contact your nearest office on:

T: 020 3397 3603
E: enquiries@redmans.co.uk
W: www.redmans.co.uk

Testimonials

4.76 Average

164 Reviews

Samantha K

Absolutely brilliant thank you. Caroline Lewis is a legend

Posted 2 weeks ago

Anonymous

The legal advice was clear and helpful.

Posted 2 weeks ago

Davinder P

Good Service

Posted 2 weeks ago

Adrian V

I was using Redmans services for a Settlement Agreement. Very quick and professional service. The outcome was favourable and I was very pleased with the amendments and results. Pretty glad to recommend them for any type of legal advice.

Posted 2 weeks ago

Anonymous

Very responsive, efficient, clear and supportive. Thank you! Highly recommend.

Posted 3 weeks ago

Tiago S

Chris was always prompt to help me with legal matters that are beyond my comprehension and very helpful leasing with my former employer. I would recommend Redmans Solicitors to everyone who needs help.

Posted 3 weeks ago

Anonymous

Fast and professional advice tailored to what was needed. Thanks for your help Chris Hadrill and team.

Posted 3 weeks ago

Peter S

Really pleased with the outcome and the advice I had from Chris and Sacha.

Posted 3 weeks ago

Harika A

Redmans solicitor's helped me with my settlement agreement, Chris has been very helpful throughout the process.He was very prompt in his responses and made my settlement look simple.Special thanks to Caroline for her efficient communication, thorough explaination of contract terminology and negotiations.I highly reccommend Redmans solicitors for anyone seeking employment related legal help.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Good and quick service

Posted 4 weeks ago

Ricky D

Very satisfying to be assured of such attention and professionalism.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Excellent service - thankyou

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Efficient, timely and friendly support and advice

Posted 4 weeks ago

Ahmed S

They are always on hand when you need them and provide support even when its not necessary.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Nemen S

Wonderful experience.Chris was very responsive and provided an excellent service. A real professional who I would recommend to anyone

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Their guidance was clear and they provided me with all the information I required. Friendly yet professional

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Chris @ Redmans assisted me with an employment issue. Firstly, he was very proactive in coming back to my initial enquiry and then helped to clearly lay out the options that I had in relation to my position. He then assisted with the preparation of my case, which led to a very satisfactory outcome. I would highly recommend the quality of service & professionalism offered by Redmans Solicitors.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Great service

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Chris was very effective and decisive in dealing with my matter. I felt guided, and the pressure to make decisions was taken off my shoulders; he knew what needed to be done and I was happy to follow his advice. The result of the legal dispute was a great success for me. He is also kind and personable. The only thing that I would say it could be improved, is the accuracy of cost estimation at the beginning: not many activites, that could not have been forseen had to take place, but costs went up more than double in the end. Overall very good and trustworthy. I would definately recommend and use Redmans services again.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Liz P

An excellent professional service was provided by Chris Hadrill and Mel Chin. Efficient and trustworthy - would highly recommend this company.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Redmans Solicitors were great. They were able to advice me quickly and efficiently! I would recommend them, as a good solicitors to use.

Posted 1 month ago