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Ladder fall costs builder $60K

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 25/05/2016

A Wellington builder has been hit with a $60,000 bill after one of his employees was brain damaged after falling from a ladder.

Geordie Grieve, trading as Geordie Grieve Builders, was on Wednesday fined $15,000 and ordered to pay almost $49,000 in reparations to an employee injured in March last year.

The Wellington District Court heard the employee had been on the ladder while taking down a 2.8m-tall balcony.

The ladder slipped forward, sending him crashing to the ground and leaving him with skull fractures and severe head injuries leading to a two-month stay in hospital.

A WorkSafe investigation found the non-slip rubber feet on the ladder had been worn out and said Grieve had failed to make sure the ladder was safe for use.

It said a pair of rubber feet only cost about $14 to replace.

"The ladder's worn out feet heavily increased the chance of a fall from height occurring," said WorkSafe's Marcus Nalter.

Grieve was found guilty of one charge of failing to take all practicable steps to keep a worker safe under the Health and Safety in Employment Act.

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