…remain the most common cause of major/ specified injuries at work (at 57%), and make up more than one third of the ‘over seven day’ injuries reported (36%). Falls from height in isolation also remain the most common cause of fatalities at work, accounting for nearly a third, at 29%.

The recent examples outlined below demonstrate the potential costs to organisations who do fall foul of these types of safety risks:

A Derbyshire school has been prosecuted after a pupil’s grandmother fell off the side of an unguarded staircase whilst attending the School to watch him play football. The School were fined £10,000 and ordered to pay costs of £534 as a result of the safety failings that led to her injuries; namely the lack of handrails and guard rails on the staircases (which have now been fitted by the School).

Full Article available at: http://press.hse.gov.uk/2014/derbyshire-school-fined-after-grandmother-falls-from-stairs/?ebul=hsegen&cr=12/06-oct-14

An NHS Trust was fined for safety failings after a vulnerable mental health patient was left paralysed after diving off a roof, having accessed the roof on two previous occasions when they had to be ‘talked down’.

The total fine and costs incurred ended up at £26,864 for what was a foreseeable and preventable incident, but this sum pales into insignificance at the thought a young man of 26 has been left paralysed.

Full Article available at:


Another mental health service provider was fined following a patient, with a history of trying to abscond, fell from a first floor window of a secure unit in Harlow, Essex.

This type of case is unfortunately all too common, with several such incidents in the past year, most of which could have been avoided if window restrictors had been correctly fitted.

In this case the eventual fine and costs that the trust had to pay totalled £10,615.

Full Article available at:


And for proof that even the largest of employers can get it wrong…

Wm. Morrisons Supermarkets plc has been ordered to pay £80,000 after a worker at its Ipswich store slipped on a wet floor.

The systems administration clerk was working near the store’s fish counter, in an area with smooth ‘terrazzo’ floor tiles, when she slipped on the spill on 4 June 2012. As she fell, she caught her chest on a metal food preparation bench. She bruised her ribs and needed a month off work, but made a full recovery.

They had failed to learn from a previous incident in 2011, when the retailer was fined £17,500 after a worker at the same store broke her elbow when she slipped on oil whilst preparing meat at a food counter.

Original Article available at: