The Risk Management Tool Box Blog

Fall from height at Legoland

Graham Marshall - Thursday, February 07, 2013

Over 40 people have died as a result of a workplace fall in the UK and almost 3,500 suffered a major injury in the last year.

So we have no sympathy for the operators of Legoland who allowed a worker to fall from a walkway on a roller-coaster ride, breaking his shoulder and several ribs.

Reading Magistrates Court in the UK were told how the 42 year-old worker fell more than three meters as he was working to remove two damaged roller coaster trains from a track.

The court heard the employee was one of a team taking part in a lifting operation to remove the damaged parts from the Dragon Coaster ride.

He fell when he stepped on to a section of walkway that had been removed and replaced, but not secured in position.

The HSE investigation found that despite the serious injury the man suffered, the work continued in the same way the following day in order to complete the task.

A risk assessment by the company stated that harnesses and lanyards should have been used by the work crew, but this was not enforced by management and supervision on site.

Merlin Attractions Operations Ltd admitted two breaches of the Work at Height Regulations (2005) and was fined £23,200 and ordered to pay full costs of £12,115.

At the Risk Tool Box, we believe that falls from height are avoidable and this court case highlights the importance of using safe systems of work when working up high.

We also feel that individual workers need to use their brains and say "no" when asked to perform dangerous work at height without adequate protection.

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