The regulator also found that adequate risk assessments had not been carried out and workers were allowed to use unsafe scaffolding.
HSE inspector Phil Nicolle said: “This case highlights the duty that all construction contractors have to plan, manage and monitor their work activities appropriately.
Small construction companies cannot ignore their responsibility to effectively manage health and safety. Reliance on experience is not enough. Managers and supervisors must be suitably trained to enable them to fulfill their duties and ensure the safety of their workers.”
According to British safety legislation, small builders have an obligation to manage hazards and risk, inform and train their workforce and co-operate with their clients.
In addition to this, companies must also make welfare facilities available in case somebody suffers a minor injury.
Another important consideration is site access. A number of incidents occur each year when unauthorised people somehow manage to force their way into a building site.
This problem is particularly bad during school holidays when bored children think it is a good idea to play in dangerous construction areas.