Business partners fined £13K for scaffolding collapse



Two scaffolding business partners that erected unsafe scaffolding were sentenced on Wednesday 16 November.

Scaffolding Systems South West bosses were fined a total of £13,000, Terrence Foster was fined £8,000 and his business partner Shaun Greenslade was fined £5,000. Both had to pay court costs of £2,040.

Exeter Magistrates court heard that on the 25 March 2009 a large section of scaffolding erected by Scaffolding Systems South West at a builders merchants came away from the building, damaging a number of parked cars.

The causes for the collapse that HSE inspectors found was that netting had been fixed to the scaffold that extended nearly a meter above the roof of the building. The netting was also fixed to the inside edge of the scaffold instead of the outside which basically made the scaffold a sail to the prevailing wind. The investigation also found there was inadequate stability measures on the scaffold to withstand foreseeable wind speeds, such as scaffolding ties.

HSE Inspector, Andrew Kingscott said:

“The degree of risk and danger to workers and the public was considerable. The standard of the scaffold as installed fell far short of the appropriate level.”

“This incident could easily have led to human tragedy and should act as a wake-up call to scaffolders to carry their work out to industry standards.”

Share your thoughts on this story below.