Company fined €750,000 after fatal fall from height in workplace.

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In Dublin Circuit Court, Judge Orla Crowe fined Ove Arup and Partners Ltd €1,500,000. Due to mitigating factors, including early plea and charitable donations, the fine was reduced to €750,000.

The company had earlier pleaded guilty to Count 2, Section 12 contrary to Section 77 (9) (a) and Count 3, Section 8 (2) (c) (i) related to Section 77(2)(a) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act, 2005.

Other charges relating to Section 19 and Section 8(2) (g) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act, 2005 and Regulation 33(e) of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work General Application Regulations were taken into account in judgement.

The fatal incident occurred on the morning of 23rd September 2019 where a worker, whilst in the process of undertaking a preinstall survey for the installation of telecommunication cables in a plant room located on the sixth floor of the building, stepped onto a fragile surface. The fragile surface that sealed a vertical service duct gave way and the worker fell from a height.

Mark Cullen, Assistant Chief Executive of the Health and Safety Authority, said, “Where there is a known risk in a workplace, in this case working from height, employers in control of that workplace have a duty to ensure that the appropriate precautions are in place. This will protect employees and others who may be carrying out work activity at the place of work under their control. Failure by the employer in this case as led to the tragic death of a worker. We urge employers to carry out risk assessments and engage with their employees and others to ensure that incidents like this one are prevented.”

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