The failings of a local business – and its owner – to protect its customers from harm has been brought to justice after a member of the public fell through the floor of a store in Mexborough, costing the company in excess of £20,000 in fines and costs.
Dalwinder Singh and his company, Gurmit Retail Ltd, faced charges at Sheffield Crown Court after a customer dropped approximately 5ft when the floor he was stood on gave way and collapsed in to the basement below.
The man, who was shopping in a retail clothing store at Denim House, High Street, Mexborough, sustained injuries to his shoulder and his head and he was struck on the head with a marble floor tile.
An investigation carried out by Doncaster Council’s Health and Safety Inspectors, found that the floor joists were rotten. The shop was suffering from extensive damp and had mould on the shop walls and there was a water pump in the basement below to pump out excess water. The owner’s company had placed black and yellow hazard tape over the uneven edges of the tiles and were aware there was an issue with the floor.
A prohibition notice was served on the owner of the shop to prevent the use of the ground floor until it was made safe.
The shop had been renovated approximately one year before but building inspectors advised that the flooring was not of the correct construction for the building conditions and the load that had been placed upon it from the marble floor tiles.
Following service of the prohibition notice, a building engineer advised on the correct construction of the floor and the floor was replaced and the shop reopened.
Cllr Chris McGuinness, said: “The Council has responsibility for the enforcement of Health & Safety in the majority of Doncaster’s businesses.
“Where significant failures to protect the public health are found then it will have no hesitation in taking legal against the offending business owner.
“Promoting successful and safe businesses in Doncaster is a key part of creating a prosperous and vibrant Borough for the future.”
As the shop building was owned by the Directors of the business, charges were brought against both the company and also the individual Directors as the health and safety offences committed were attributable to their neglect.
- Category: Environment