Fatality due to poorly maintained scaffold tower

A scaffolding company in Glasgow has been fined £40,000 after James Baillie, 53, fell through a scaffold tower deck and suffered serious head injuries on the 22nd September 2011, leading to his death the next day.

The Hamilton Sheriff Court heard how the scaffold tower deck was in a poor condition due to rot and decay. When Mr Baillie walked on it, it broke, causing him to fall almost 6 metres to the ground.

The company, Extra Access Limited c/o Scott-Moncrieff of 25 Bothwell Street, Glasgow, pleaded guilty on the 31st of July 2015 to breaches of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 Section 3(1) and was fine the sum of £40,000.

In a statement after the hearing, HSE Inspector Graeme McMinn said:

“The company failed to provide safe and suitable working equipment for their customer and his workers.

“There is no excuse for allowing the use at work of mobile access tower components that were in such a poor condition, the scaffolding industry is well aware of the risks involved in this type of work.

“Mr Baillie’s tragic death could have been avoided if Extra Access Limited had ensured the scaffold tower deck was properly inspected and maintained or otherwise taken out of service.”


Should you ever need any advice as to the suitability or safety of a scaffold tower, we will be happy to help or direct you towards other companies, information and resources that will help to prevent a tragic and easily preventable accident such as this.