Tesco fined £500k after worker falls through supermarket roof
Tesco has been fined a total of £500,000 after a worker fell 30-feet through a fragile skylight in June 2014 whilst working with three other colleagues on the roof of the Tesco Express in Liscard, attending to a rain leak into the store for his employer Tesco Maintenance Ltd.
The shop had a false ceiling since it opened in 2009, with skylights which had been painted white along with the rest of the roof. It was only when one of the men felt a crack beneath his foot that they realised there were plastic roof lights, which were not marked as being fragile.
Upon the discovery, one of the workers colleagues began marking around the skylights with yellow warning paint but before he had done them all the worker fell through one of them.
He was extremely fortunate in that he did not break any bones in the fall and walked away with cuts, bruises, and some muscle damage. He was helped by customers and colleagues in store and taken to the nearby walk-in centre for treatment.
As a result of the fall he was off work for a number of weeks during which he had physiotherapy and was able to return to work.
Tesco Maintenance Ltd, pleaded guilty to two health and safety breaches involving failing to ensure safety and Tesco Stores admitted one similar breach and were fined £300,000 and £200,000 respectively, and have to jointly pay £9,379 prosecution costs.
Both companies had previous good health and safety records and they expressed regret and apology over the incident, and as a result have enhanced safety procedures whilst carrying out this type of maintenance activity.