In The News Elsewhere

  • A civils contractor has been fined £250,000 and ordered to pay £100,000 costs after a self-employed ground worker lost an arm following a disc cutter accident.

Truro Crown Court heard how a self-employed ground worker (IP) was working to complete ground works at a new building site near Bodmin, Cornwall. The IP was using a petrol disc cutter to cut reinforced concrete beams to size when the saw ‘kicked up’ and caused a severe laceration to his arm.

He underwent months of operations following the incident to try to save his arm but it had to be amputated 4 months later, which has had a significant impact on his ability to work and his personal life.

An HSE investigation found that the civils contractor was responsible for the groundworks at the site, including providing and maintaining the disc cutter. IP had not been sufficiently trained to use the petrol disc cutter and the system of work in use for cutting reinforced concrete beams had not been planned or assessed to ensure the risks were properly controlled.

The civils contractor should have been aware that IP had no previous experience of undertaking such a task and this should have been identified and addressed at his induction or at the time the work was allocated to him to complete.