A company has been fined £550,000 after a man died falling from a ladder. 

Matthew Mason was fatally injured while he was installing a public address system at Bearsden train station on June 5, 2018.

The 20-year-old electrician was trying to free speaker cabling that was stuck and fell back onto a section of metal piping that was being used as a handle on a cable drum.

Glasgow Times:

He was pronounced dead at the scene after the piping pierced his side, causing serious internal injuries.

Linbrooke Services Limited, of which Mason was an employee, was found guilty of breaches of health and safety and working at height regulations.

The firm failed to identify the risks involved with pulling cables through a conduit at height, even though they had been previously informed of the problems met by a subcontractor. 

Glasgow Times:

The prosecutor led evidence over a 14-day trial at Dumbarton Sheriff Court showing that the company had failed to plan and risk assess the work and have in place a safe system of work.  

Stepladders were unsuitable for the work being carried out and there were insufficient measures in place to prevent someone from falling.

They also failed to identify the risks of improvised cable dispensing methods or ensure that the surrounding area was free of material which could cause injury if someone were to fall. 

Glasgow Times:

Mason's family was paid a sum of £200,000 as compensation. 

Speaking after the sentencing, Debbie Carroll, who leads health and safety investigations for the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service (COPFS), said: “Matthew Mason lost his life in circumstances which were foreseeable and avoidable.  

“His death could have been prevented had Linbrooke Services Limited put in place appropriate planning, supervision, and protective measures to manage the risk of working at height.    

 "It is well known that falls from height are one of the single greatest causes of death and serious injury to workers within the construction industry.    

“From the evidence heard here, there needs to be an increased recognition and rigour within the industry in addressing the risks associated with the use of stepladders.  

 “This prosecution should remind duty holders that a failure to fulfil their obligations can have fatal consequences and they will be held accountable for this failure."