Importance of warning signs highlighted after sculpture falls onto boy's foot
Posted by Nicole Stevens.
A council has been fined after a sculpture close to a children's play area fell onto the foot of a young boy, highlighting the importance of warning signs.
The boy, aged five at the time of the incident, was playing football with friends on January 30th last year at a play park on Lammermuir Crescent, Haddington.
Close to the site was the Nungate Wheel sculpture, which had been installed by East Lothian Council in June 2000.
The sculpture, weighing 81kg, fell from its upright position onto the boy's right foot, causing multiple fractures. He was admitted to hospital and had the foot placed in plaster.
Following an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), it was found that there was no representative or department within the council with responsibility for the inspection and upkeep of sculptures in the area.
It was also found that the piece looked to have been weakened due to a fatigue fracture, consistent with people swinging it or rocking it.
At Haddington Sheriff Court, East Lothian Council pleaded guilty to breaching section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and was fined £6,000.
"Had East Lothian Council carried out a simple risk assessment, they would have easily identified it was possible that children would climb and play on the Nungate Wheel, given that it was positioned only a few metres away from the play area," HSE inspector Lindsey Stein said after the case.
Recently, an employer was fined after a 14-year-old boy was injured when he overturned a dumper truck on a construction site in Stroud.
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