Labourer ‘lucky to be alive’ after building fell on him during demolition

A labourer is “lucky to be alive” after part of a Victorian building fell on him during demolition work.

Tommy Brooks, 57, from Woolwich, was left with life changing injuries on March 2, 2022, when he was working at the corner of the building in Kilburn and a large piece of masonry fell from the unstable roof, landing on top of him.

Mr Brooks had been tasked with clearing bricks for reclamation. He was left with significant long term injuries including a broken shoulder, 12 broken ribs, as well as spinal and internal injuries.

The 57-year-old had been employed on the site as a labourer for three months before the incident.

MAC Demolition Ltd, the Middlesex firm contracted to carry out the works on the building, has been fined £60,000 after the incident.

The company had been contracted to carry out soft stripping works on the Victorian property as well as the demolition of its roof.

An investigation by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found MAC Demolition had “failed to adequately assess the risk of falling objects during demolition and failed to implement and enforce adequate exclusion zones”.

MAC Demolition Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching construction regulations. They were ordered to pay £3,229 costs on top of the fine at a hearing at Willesden Magistrates Court on Thursday.

After the hearing, HSE inspector Gordon Nixon said: “Tommy’s injuries were life changing and he is lucky to be alive.

“This serious incident and the devastation it caused could have been avoided if basic, industry standard control measures had been put in place.

“Companies need be aware that we will not hesitate to take appropriate enforcement action against those that fall below the required standards.”

Pictured top: A large piece of masonry fell from the roof of the Victorian property in Kilburn (Picture: HSE)

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