• Robert Spicer

Tree cutter struck by large branch: no proper training: very serious head injuries

Tree worker struck by branch: serious head injuries

Health and Safety Executive v Perry Regan t/a Toppers Garden Services (2017) Peterborough magistrates’ court, October 16

Statutory reference: s.3 of the Health and Safety at Work, etc., Act 1974 (HSWA)

The facts

  • In November 2015 Perry Regan climbed six metres up a ladder and cut branches from a tree, using a chainsaw. A large branch fell from the tree and struck am employee on the head.

  • The worker suffered serious head injuries. His injuries included a fractured skull and the loss of an eye. He was placed in an induced coma.

  • Perry Regan was not competent or qualified to carry out, manage or supervise the work. He was using a chainsaw without being qualified.

  • The work was not properly planned to identify risks.

  • No adequate training or instruction was given to workers.

  • No personal protective equipment was made available.

The decision

Regan was sentenced to 20 weeks in prison suspended for 18 months. He was ordered to pay £2000 costs and a £115 victim surcharge fee, for a breach of s.3 HSWA, for failing to ensure the health and safety of non-employees.

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