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Suspended sentence after death of workman

Suspended sentence after death of workman

17 January 2012 Email this article

A Leicester man has been given a suspended prison sentence after a worker was killed when he fell through a roof at a disused factory unit in Leicester.

Robert Jozwiak, 44, of Humberstone, was repairing the roof on the former textile dye house at Evington Valley Road, Leicester on 3 June 2009 when it gave way and he landed on the concrete floor six metres below. His skull and back were fractured and he died from his injuries later that evening. He had been instructed to carry out the work by Musa Suleman who was helping to bring the building back into use. Mr Suleman, 56, of Freeman Road North, Leicester, was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for failing to ensure the work he arranged to be carried out was properly planned, supervised or carried out in a safe manner. He pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 4(1) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was today given a 12 month prison sentence suspended for two years at Leicester Crown Court.

He was also ordered to pay compensation of £13,800 to Mr Jozwiak's family and full costs of £17,337. Passing sentence His Honour Judge Simon Hammond said Mr Jozwiak's death was a terrible tragedy that could have been prevented.

He said there were clear lessons to be learned and urged anyone working on buildings to treat health and safety as their top priority in order to prevent injury or death. After the hearing HSE inspector Karl Raw said: "The roof was made of corrugated asbestos cement sheets, and the work required careful planning and consideration of the risks involved. Tragically, Mr Suleman failed to do this and to properly supervise the work which resulted in the needless death of a husband and father. "Safe routes and protective equipment should have been in position to allow Mr Jozwiak to get to work areas without injury, and measures to prevent or mitigate any falls should have been in place.

"Work at height remains a major cause of injury and fatalities in the workplace and for this reason it is important appropriate planning, supervision and safety measures are essential. This becomes even more critical when a job involves work on or near fragile roofing materials as at this site."

Last year more than 4,000 employees suffered major injuries after falling from height at work, and 21 workers in the construction industry died. For more information on HSE's shattered lives campaign go to www.hse.gov.uk/shatteredlivesA Leicester man has been given a suspended prison sentence after a worker was killed when he fell through a roof at a disused factory unit in Leicester.