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Office Worker Dies
An office worker overbalanced and fell to his death from a third floor window. In order to open the window, which pivoted 360º, the victim stood on some boxes, overbalanced and fell to his death.

Who was to blame?

"This employer is totally inexcusable."

The office worker?
Partly, as he should have known better than to climb on anything to open a window.

The supervisor/manager?
Partly, as she should have identified the possible risk and notified the employer.

The employer?
YES - The employer is legally responsible for making sure there are adequate Health and Safety policies, procedures and equipment, i.e. the windows should have been filled with a restraining mechanism to restrict opening.

What happened next?

The magistrate
"This employer is totally inexcusable. A risk assessment of the building should have been carried out before anyone worked there. This is a clear infringement of Regulation 15 of the Workforce Regulations 1992 relating to windows, skylights and ventilators. I fined the employer £100,000".

The employer
"We had advisors in from the Health and Safety Executive to carry out risk assessment and recommend changes needed. We've put all these in place. We've also offered to help the family in any way we can".

The supervisor/manager
"I've asked to go on a Health and Safety course and have now rewritten my induction programme for new staff".

The office worker's family
"We're suing the company".

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