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Saturday 7th
posted by Peter Lazenby in Britain

THE boss of a scaffolding firm where a worker lost both forearms, his right leg and his left foot in an accident avoided prison yesterday.

Boundary Scaffolding Ltd director Jonathon Griffiths-Clack, 44, of Minety, Wiltshire, admitted failing to discharge general health, safety and welfare duty to an employee.

He was given a six-month jail sentence suspended for 12 months, and ordered to pay prosecution costs of £1,545.30.

His company was fined £80,000 and ordered to pay costs of £1,415.10.

Jamie Mines, 34, received a massive electric shock from a 33-kilowatt power line while working on scaffolding at the company’s depot in December.

The scaffolding was closer to the overhead power lines than regulations allow and Mr Mines was handling corrugated metal when the shock occurred.

He was placed in an induced coma for six weeks as a result of the life-changing injuries.

The court heard in a victim impact statement that Mr Mines had been a keen amateur footballer, and that he had twin baby daughters.

Mr Mines said: “All I could think of when I woke up was the things I wouldn’t be able to do … I wouldn’t be able to hold my babies’ hands again, I wouldn’t be able to draw, play catch or teach my girls any of the things that I had learned with my hands.”

He added: “Sitting here now in my wheelchair nine months after the accident and I still don’t walk.

“For a man who was very active before the accident it has been extremely difficult, I was a keen sportsman as well as someone who enjoyed his job and was really hands-on with my babies.

“How my life has changed is almost indescribable.”

Passing sentence on Mr Griffiths-Clack, District Judge Anthony Calloway said: “The case passes the custody threshold but factoring all the mitigating features the court is able to suspend the sentence.”

Speaking afterwards, Health and Safety Executive inspector Ian Whittles said: “This incident could have been prevented had the company and its director properly planned a safe system of work and ensured the scaffolding was erected in line with HSE regulations.

“Due to their failings, a young father has been left with life-changing injuries and the lives of an entire family have been changed forever.”