Supermarket fined after worker injured in roof fall

The employee of Tesco Maintenance Ltd was lucky to suffer only minor injuries after falling 30 feet through a fragile skylight onto the trading area floor of the Tesco Liscard Express store in Liscard Village, Wallasey, in June 2014. The worker was part of a team carrying out repairs to the roof and gutters of the store when the incident occurred.

An investigation found that no risk assessment or method statement had been produced prior to carrying out the work. The fragile skylights should have been identified and precautions taken but Tesco Maintenance Ltd had received no information relating to the fragility of the roof from their client Tesco Stores Ltd.

Tesco Stores Ltd of Tesco House, Shire Park, Kestrel Way, Welwyn Garden City, pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and Regulation 10 of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007 and was fined £200,000 with £712.70 costs

Tesco Maintenance Ltd of Tesco House, Shire Park, Kestrel Way, Welwyn Garden City, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 9 of the Work at Height Regulations 2005, Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and was fined £300,000 with £624.60 costs.

Speaking after the hearing HSE Inspector Chris Hatton said, “Contractors should treat all roofs with care and check before starting any work if they are fragile. I am shocked at a company the size of Tesco failing to take even basic precautions to prevent injury to its employees and further, to risk injury to the public”

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