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The HSE have recently reported on two prosecutions where employees and members of the public were potentially exposed to asbestos due to unsafe construction practices and failure to comply with measures contained in the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.
In the first prosecution, a Manchester based Construction Company had been contracted to carry out refurbishment work to student accommodation between May 2021 and June 2021. During the course of the works asbestos pipe lagging was removed and spread around the site with debris in and around the skip area. The HSE found that work was carried out by 5 or 6 employees and the director of the company not a licensed asbestos removal contractor.
At the Hearing at Manchester Magistrates Court the company was fined and its director sentenced to 200 hours unpaid community work.
In the second prosecution, two company directors of a construction company involved with the demolition of a former department store in Sunderland in October 2017 received 14 months sentences suspended for 2 years and ordered to carry out 120 hours unpaid community work within 12 months as well as fines at Newcastle Crown Court after large quantities of asbestos was disturbed.
The HSE investigating the site after a reported concern of unsafe construction work found that during several months of demolition and refurbishment asbestos containing materials were broken up using sledge hammers and brute force spreading fibres across the five floors of the building as well as outside of the property located in the city centre. During their investigation the HSE found 1,315 square metres of contaminated waste across the shop floor and stairwell.
Should you suffer an accident at work or develop an illness due to exposure to asbestos, chemical or allergen at work, please feel free to contact our Personal Injury team who have over 30 years’ experience of helping people recover compensation on 01270 762325 or PI@poolealcock.co.uk. We are happy to help.
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