Leicestershire building firm fined after builder was hit by falling concrete blocks and a wooden board

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A builder was hit by falling concrete blocks and a wooden board after he fell five metres when a partially built floor gave way on a building site in Leicestershire.

The worker, who does not wish to be named, fractured his elbow and nose in the incident, which occurred earlier this year at Brook Street, Shepshed.

Leicester Magistrates’ Court heard yesterday that the builder was helping to construct the second floor of a new build house for Hinckley-based W J Edge & Sons Builders Ltd, when it gave way after being overloaded with concrete blocks.

The joists collapsed onto first floor joists that also gave way.

The lower joists helped to break his fall, but he still fell to the ground with the materials, some of which landed on top of him. He was unable to return to work for six weeks.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigated and prosecuted his employer for failing to prevent the incomplete floor from being used and overloaded.

W J Edge & Sons Builders Ltd, of Henson Way, Sharnford, Hinckley, was fined £7,000 and ordered to pay £5,000 in costs after pleading guilty to breaching the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.

HSE inspector Martin Waring said: “This could have been a far more serious incident had the lower joists not helped to break the worker’s fall to the concrete below. He was also fortunate that a wooden board that landed on top of him provided a degree of protection from the falling concrete blocks.

The latest figures show that 38 people died as a result of a fall in a workplace in Great Britain in 2010/11, and more than 4,000 suffered a major injury.