Excavator accident not reported despite builder losing leg
27 Sep 2021
Builder jailed for failing to report a serious incident at a construction site.
Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard that on 8 January 2019, worker Simon Lewis had been clearing a site in New Malden with an excavator so a new house could be built.
The excavator tipped while digging and it trapped his leg resulting in an amputation.
An HSE investigation found that Lewis had no formal training for operating excavators and had requested a 3-ton model was provided for the work.
But only a smaller 1.7-ton excavator was provided and Lewis was put under pressure to use this.
The incident was not reported to the HSE within ten days as required and the defendant, Paul Adams had not investigated the incident.
HSE was only able to start an investigation more than eight months later when the victim complained. By this time crucial evidence relating to the cause of the incident was unobtainable and the work was almost completed.
There was no health and safety related documentation and there was no employer’s insurance cover for Lewis to claim against.
Adams had not obtained any health and safety related training during his 50 years in the construction industry.