Warehouse owner fined £96k after worker falls 30 feet through skylight

A Blackburn-based warehouse owner has been fined after an employee of a roofing contractor, Nizamuddin Gorji, fell approximately 30 feet through a glass skylight on a warehouse roof resulting in severe life changing injuries.

Preston Crown Court heard that roofing contractor Gorji was engaged by Floors ‘n’ Carpets Ltd of Gate Street, Blackburn, to over-clad the existing roof.

Three operatives were employed to carry out the work which started on May 13, 2020.

The following day, one of the employees, Taj Zahir, fell through the roof sustaining serious injuries to his pelvis, arm, knee and face and has undergone extensive surgery since.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found that Floors ‘n’ Carpets Ltd failed to undertake due diligence checks on the roofing contractor’s documents and ensure a construction phase plan was prepared prior to work commencing.

Nizmuddin Gorji previously pleaded guilty to failing to adequately plan the work and provide coverings or underslung nets to prevent or mitigate a fall through the fragile roof.

He had not completed any health and safety training and did not adequately train the operatives he employed.

Floors ’n’ Carpets Ltd, of Gate Street, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to a breach of Regulation 4(1) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was fined £96,000 and ordered to pay costs of £36,919.75

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Jackie Western, said: “The risks from working at height are well known.

“Those with control of work at height have a duty to ensure safe methods of working, which should include ensuring the use of suitable work equipment and adequate supervision.”