Worker falls 5.5 meters to his death through skylight

A company which manufactures signage and displays for high street retailer was sentenced today for safety breaches after a worker fell to his death through a roof light.

Richard Perry
Richard Perry

Richard Perry, 32, was working with a colleague covering roof lights with blackout vinyl in June 2014 at Whiteghyll Plastics Ltd. This was in an attempt to block out the sunlight to reduce the heat within the factory. Mr Perry fell 5.5 metres through a fragile roof light to the fabrications department below. The company failed to adequately supervise Mr Perry and another employee. There were several missed opportunities by a number of managers to stop them from working on the roof. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted the firm over the incident.

Roof skylight
Roof skylight

Whiteghyll Plastics Ltd of City Road Bradford pleaded guilty to breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £120,000 with £37,655 costs by Bradford Crown Court.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Andrea Jones commented: “Two employees were on the roof for some time with no precautions in place to prevent falling through fragile roof material or off the open edge of the roof. This accident would not have happened if these two employees had been appropriately supervised by management.

“Falls from height, particularly from roofs is the highest cause of fatal accidents.”

Broken skylight
Broken skylight

Richard Perry’s wife, Samantha, said: “Not only did my boys lose their Daddy but I lost my husband, my best friend and my soulmate.

“Nobody should die at work and leave behind a young family and wife. He had his whole life ahead of him.”

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