Most people now accept that health and safety is something which they often need help with and having an expert to call on when they’re not confident on handling the risks can be a great reassurance. However, that expert does need certain skills and qualities as well as just paper qualifications.
Having to occasionally to dig in our heels and say no is not an easy thing to do when the client is paying you but we have to remember what they are paying us for – to protect them and their staff and provide advice that is not just in satisfaction of the regulations but also in line with what is technically and morally right.
Read on to find out about a recent case which highlights exactly why our consultants need both the skills and experience to say no when they need to say no…
A business director and their retained safety consultant have both been jailed for their roles in the death of a labourer when a basement excavation collapsed. He was crushed to death following the collapse of a basement excavation in Ellerby Street, Fulham in December 2010.
Conrad Sidebottom a Director of Siday Construction Ltd, and his health and safety consultant Richard Golding, were found guilty on December 2, 2014 of the manslaughter of Anghel Milosavlevici. Sidebottom was sentenced to three years and three months in jail and Golding was also jailed for nine months.
The court heard how as the site manager Mr Sidebottom was aware of the dangerous state of the excavation, but had taken no steps to ensure it was safe. Mr Golding, a qualified health and safety advisor who was contracted out by AllDay Safety Services Ltd, was also aware of the risks as he was responsible for drafting a method statement to be followed to ensure safety concerns were addressed. However, this document was found to be inadequate, its geenral safety advice was not followed. Despite Mr Golding having the authority to stop dangerous works, he failed to do so.
DCI Duffield, who headed up the case, commented: “There was overwhelming evidence that Sidebottom and Golding’s failure to carry out their respective roles directly resulted in the death of Anghel Milosavlevici. In this case the danger of collapse was not only foreseeable, it had been specifically identified by Golding in his risk assessments.”
If you’ve got questions or need support on safety in the industrial, contracting or construction sectors please contact us for sensible and proportionate advice on 01453 800100