Steam Railway ordered to pay over £36k after volunteer falls and breaks leg

Appearing before Llanelli Magistrates’ Court on Thursday (Sep 7) Gwili Railway Company Limited.

The court heard that between 26/05/2022 and 16/06/2022 at Gwili Railway Company limited’s, Llwyfan Cerrig Yard, being the employer within the meaning of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 (“the Act”), Gwili Railway Company Limited contravened regulation 6(3) of The Work at Height Regulations 2005 in that whilst carrying out work on the roof of railway coaches, it failed to take suitable and sufficient measures to prevent so far as is reasonably practicable any person, including Mr Andrew Smith, falling a distance liable to cause personal injury, whereby it is guilty of an offence. Contrary to section 33(1)(c) and Schedule 3A of the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974.

It is understood that the volunteer fell from a railway carriage while carrying out work.

Llanelli Magistrates’ Court heard the volunteer broke their right leg on 16 June 2022 while pulling tent fabric over a frame erected over two railway coaches.

Their injury required an operation and several days in hospital.

A Prohibition Notice was served by an Office of Rail and Road (ORR) inspector 12 days later.

The industry regulator found there was a lack of planning, management and supervision.

It also said there were not enough measures in place to protect against falling from the carriage roof, and none of the volunteers had competence in working at height.

The ladder the volunteer used was also found to be in poor condition.

The company pleaded guilty and were fined £18000 and ordered to  pay a surcharge to fund victim services of £190 and costs of £18557.32.

The Defendant’s guilty plea taken into account when imposing sentence.

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