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Contractor fined after worker left severely brain damaged

A Darlington contractor has been fined after a worker was left severely brain damaged following a fall from a house roof.

Mark Lambton, 50, from Darlington, was working for James Wilson, trading as J Wilson Home Improvements, when the incident happened on 2 July 2011.

Mr Wilson had secured work to replace roof tiles, point ridge tiles and fit a dry verge system to the gable end of a house in Wheeldale Close, Darlington. Mr Lambton and a third man were hired to assist.

On 5 September, Darlington Magistrates' Court heard that Mr Lambton was on the roof clearing concrete debris and fell around six to seven metres while attempting to move onto a set of ladders at the gable end of the property. He landed on the path at the side of the property.

He was rushed to hospital and was placed in a drug-induced coma for more than two months. He remains severely brain damaged, in a vegetative state with no likelihood of improvement.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive found the manner in which the work was carried out was unsafe as there were no precautions to prevent the workers from falling from the roof.

James Wilson, trading as J Wilson Home Improvements, 53, of Mallard Road, Darlington was fined £12,000 and ordered to pay £3,000 costs after pleading guilty to breaching Regulation 4(1)(c) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.


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