A scaffolder has been sentenced after being caught on camera erecting scaffolding 60ft in the air without clipping on.
Scaffolder Terrance Murry has been handed a 26-week suspended jail sentence for his dangerous actions. He admitted breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act.
Appearing today for sentencing at Manchester Magistrates’ Court Murray was told his actions had not only put his own safety at risk but that of others also.
As we previously reported Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court heard how on the 30 June 2017 Murray was erecting scaffolding at the rear of a Grade II-listed building on Quay Street in Manchester as part of works to renovate the windows.
The court was told Murray was spotted and photographed by a retired Health & Safety inspector wearing a harness but wasn’t clipped on, he was at least 60ft up on the top lift of the scaffolding.
In the image below, the experienced scaffolder can be seen standing on the top lift without first erecting a SG4 guardrail.
The Manchester Evening News reports that Prosecuting, Seb Gomez said Murray had been given the correct safety equipment and was not under pressure to carry out the work quickly.
“We believe it would have been more than reasonable to expect Mr Murrary to follow his ample training and eight to nine years of experience to carry out his job correctly rather than deliberately cut corners for what was in effect, little real gain other than time,” he added.
During an interview with Health and Safety Executive officials, Murray described his actions as a ‘moment of stupidity’.
Defending, Gareth Price said: “There is no evidence of this being part of endemic practice. It appears to be a one-off moment of stupidity.”
Sentencing, District Judge Mark Hadfield, said he was satisfied Murray had shown ‘genuine remorse’ for his actions.
He added: “The immediate risk you were creating was to your own safety and to that of others. If you were to lose balance the risk was others could have been injured, potentially fatally.”
Murray was sentenced to 26 weeks in prison, suspended for 12 months. He will be required to complete 100 hours community service and was ordered to pay £615 in costs and victim surcharge.
Matt Greenly, HM inspector of health and safety, said: “This result goes to show the HSE will prosecute where we see people being put at risk or killed.
“We are grateful to the court for recognising that, while no one was hurt, the potential risk of harm or death was very real. A momentary slip of concentration for even the best people can kill if there is nothing to catch you. It was fortunate this man was spotted by a health and safety professional.”