Guilty or Not Guilty? Construction companies invited to mock trial

Companies from the construction industry and its associated trades are being invited to a mock trial to give their verdict on a fictitious health and safety prosecution.

The free event, which is being organised by the West Midlands Working Well Together group with support from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Birmingham Health, Safety and Environment Association and law firm Pinsent Masons, takes place at the University of Wolverhampton Science Park on Wednesday 17 September.

The mock trial focuses on a fictional prosecution arising from an incident where an employee of a painting and decorating firm working on a refurbishment project suffers serious injuries falling from height.

The case will be heard by a magistrate and will be prosecuted and defended by qualified legal professionals as it would be in a real court case. Those attending will be asked to decide if the company and its director are guilty or not guilty. Following the verdict there will be a discussion on the case outcome and an opportunity to ask questions on the case.

Falls continue to be the biggest cause of fatal injury in Britain’s workplaces, and account for more than half of construction workplace deaths. In 2012/13, 25 of the 47 worker deaths in construction were the result of a fall from height. On top of this, more than 4,000 major injuries such as broken bones or fractured skulls are reported to HSE each year by the construction industry. More than half of these serious injuries involve falls from height or from tripping over materials on walkways and are easily preventable.

HSE acting principal inspector Amy Kalay said:

“Protecting the health and safety of employees is an essential part of risk management.

“It’ll be a real eye opener for those attending, giving a detailed insight into what happens when someone has to answer to the courts because a worker has been injured.”

For more information or to book a place contact Dee Welsh at HSE on 0121 607 6129 or email by Wednesday 10 September.


Notes to editors

1. The Health and Safety Executive is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to reduce death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training, new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement.


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