A 53-year old man working on a lift insulation on the new Radisson Blu hotel in Bristol in July 2008 was struck on the head by a short scaffold tube weighing nearly 4kg which fell from the 15th floor after it separated from the piano wire that supported it. He was standing with a colleague on the bottom of the shaft when the tube struck him, inflicting what proved to be such a severe brain injury that he now requires 24-hour care.
His employer, Hoistway Ltd of Martock, Somerset, and main contractor Miller Construction (UK) Ltd of Edinburgh were deemed by HSE to have failed to ensure that a safe system of working was in place for the installation of lifts on the site and were prosecuted.
Hoistway admitted breaching S.2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 and was fined Ã‚Â£70,000 with Ã‚Â£14,616 costs. Miller Construction admitted breaching S.3(1) of the same Act and was fined Ã‚Â£40,000 plus Ã‚Â£17,232 costs.
HSE also took issue with what they maintained had been inadequate site management and insufficient risk assessments carried out before the work was undertaken. Openings had been left unguarded and not enough had been done on the site to prevent the risk of falling objects.