The contractor of an old Ford office block to flats conversion has been prosecuted after 48 workers were found sleeping within the construction site.
Essex County Fire and Rescue Service contacted the HSE in May expressing their concern at the men sleeping on-site.
It was concluded by the HSE there was significant risk to life in the event of a fire, issuing an immediate prohibition notice preventing workers from sleeping on-site.
A second prohibition notice was also issued to close the site until all appropriate steps had been taken to protect all workers from the dangers posed by the risk of fire.
48 workers were re-housed and provided with safer sleeping accommodation.
RGB (Plastering and Construction) Limited, of Shrewsbury, pleaded guilty to breaching Regulation 29(a) and (c) of the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. They were fined £8,000 and ordered to pay costs of £6,130.
After the hearing HSE Inspector Adam Hills said:
“This case highlights the importance of ensuring those who undertake construction work have the relevant skills, knowledge, training and experience to do so.
“There doesn’t have to be an injury or incident for HSE to take action. If you irresponsibly endanger the lives of those who are simply trying to earn a living then HSE can and will take proactive action to protect them.”