Builders materials supplier fined for health and safety breaches

Thursday 5 December: A council prosecution has led to a local building supplies firm being ordered to pay more than £82,000 for failing to ensure the health and safety of a delivery driver who was crushed by some wooden decking.

Builders supplier fork lift truckOn 6 April 2017, a lorry driver delivered a load of timber decking boards to Crescent Building Supplies Limited at their branch in Longbridge Way, Uxbridge.

A forklift truck, being used by an employee of Crescent Building Supplies to unload the wood, tipped forward under the weight of its load, causing the wood to topple and trap the lorry driver.

The lorry driver sustained serious and long-term injuries to his shoulders, back, hip and leg, some of which required surgery.

Environmental health officers later found that the weight of the decking under which the driver was crushed - approximately 3 tonnes - exceeded the safe lifting capacity of both forklift trucks on site.

There was no evidence that anyone at the company had attempted to work out the weight of the load, either at the point of ordering the decking or prior to unloading it. As a result, the firm could not have known whether or not the forklift trucks had the capacity to unload the wood safely.

At Uxbridge Magistrates' Court on Tuesday 3 December, Crescent Building Supplies Limited was fined £60,000 and ordered to pay £22,015.14 in costs. They must also pay a victim surcharge of £150. The company had previously admitted breaching health and safety regulations. The money must be paid within 28 days.

Cllr Douglas Mills, Hillingdon Council's Cabinet Member for Community, Commerce and Regeneration, said: "Sadly on this occasion this company's safety procedures failed and this resulted in serious and life-changing injuries for this poor man. There cannot be a more powerful reminder of the need to stick to the law. We will never hesitate to prosecute in circumstances like this."  

Page last updated: 05 Dec 2019