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Construction worker killed when scaffolding collapsed in Putney

Two construction workers injured in fatal scaffold collapse incident

Posted on 31 October 2012

A man died in London on 29th October when the scaffolding he was working on collapsed, plunging him to his death.  Two of his co-workers were injured, when he fell from the scaffold and landed on his colleagues. The two injured men were taken to St George’s Hospital. The Health and Safety Executive has launched an investigation into the incident and the Metropolitan Police will also investigate the incident and are likely to do so jointly with the HSE.

This tragic accident once again demonstrates that the construction industry is one of the most dangerous occupations in the UK.  Falls from height are one of the most frequent causes of workplace deaths and serious injuries. Nearly a third of all workplace fatalities occur in the construction industry. Health and Safety Executive statistics show that in 2011/12 173 workers were fatally injured. Falls from height accounted for nearly a quarter of fatal injuries to workers and more than six in ten of all fatal falls took place in construction. 

Leigh Day and fatal accidents at work claims

The personal injury team at Leigh Day has sadly had to represent the families of a number of people who have died in workplace accidents. Partner and head of the team Sally Moore represented the widow of Kieron Deeney who died when he fell 40 feet to his death from a scaffold on a Laing O’Rourke construction site in Canary Wharf. 

Kieron died when he stood on a hatch cover which gave way. He died in a totally avoidable accident.  It turned out that the access hatch had been covered by an old piece of plywood that was held in place by only two nails with a minimal overlap on each side. An inquest into Kieron’s death brought a verdict of ‘unlawful killing’. Laing O’Rourke admitted responsibility for Kieron’s death during a civil claim for compensation in 2006.   Criminal proceedings were pursued by the HSE and the company was subject to a fine of £135,000.    Sally supported Jennifer Deeney throughout the inquest and criminal process.

The specialist accident at work team also represented the bereaved family of a Polish construction worker who died when he fell 23 metres from the platform of an industrial boiler. The family were overwhelmed with the challenges of liaising with the police, the Health and Safety Executive and inquest process but Leigh Day’s Polish team, including a Polish-speaking paralegal, were able to help them overcome these stressful experiences. The team brought a successful claim for compensation against the various companies working on the site, including Lentjes UK Limited and Rafaco S.A. who were convicted and fined under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

If you would like to speak to a member of the personal injury team about a workplace accident please contact Sally Moore on 020 7650 1225 for a free and friendly initial discussion.