Anthony Nightingale was snapped by a passerby using a petrol-powered disc cutter to cut through a tile while he and a colleague worked on the roof without any scaffolding, safety harnesses or other measures to stop them, or their equipment, falling from the roof.

As the owner of the roofing company Mr Nightingale was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) after a concerned member of the public spotted the unsafe work at Dennington in Suffolk last July and reported it to the HSE.

The court heard that Mr Nightingale, 34, failed to use a suitable roof ladder to reach the ridge and instead he and another man clambered up and down the tiles. They were seen walking along the ridge of the roof where there were no measures in place to prevent them from falling.

Anthony Nightingale pleaded guilty to a breach of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and was fined £1,300. He was also ordered to pay £3,000 in prosecution costs.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector Elizabeth Fowle said: "Mr Nightingale should have led by example, but instead he put his own life and the life of an employee at risk. Fortunately no one was injured on this occasion, but it is astonishing that Mr Nightingale thought it was acceptable to use a potentially dangerous piece of machinery while perched at the top of the roof.

"This case should serve as a warning to other company directors that if you work without the right safety equipment and put lives at risk, you could end up in court."

Falls from height are the biggest single cause of workplace deaths in the UK and pose a significant risk to roofers.

As a leading roofing contractor DPR Roofing are members of CHAS (Contractors Health & Safety Assessment Scheme) and are committed to their Health & Safety policy as well as our own in house policy. For more information contact us on 0113 335 0043.