Construction director charged over safety breach death

A managing director was sentenced to a 16-month custodial sentence today after a court found him guilty of breaches of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (HSWA).

The case, heard at Manchester Crown Court, followed a police-led joint investigation with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) into the death of Mr Daryl Arnold in June 2003.

Arnold, aged 27, and several others, had been employed by Mr Lee Harper of Cannock, Staffordshire, to remove and replace the roof of a warehouse on the Lynton industrial estate in Salford. No safe system of work had been prepared before the work began, and no safety precautions were in place at the time of the incident. Arnold had never worked on a roof before.

While working on the roof, he stepped backwards onto a fragile rooflight on an adjoining warehouse, which gave way. Arnold fell approximately 6.75m, landing on the ground floor directly below. He died as a result of his injuries.

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