Brothers Naveed and Rizwan Hussain were refurbishing a basement on a three-storey Sheffield terrace. However, despite removing a number of internal walls, they inadequately shored up the basement which undermined a central wall which subsequently collapsed. This in turn caused the collapse of the floors above and the front wall. Two residents and another builder sustained minor injuries, and it was considered remarkable that there had been no deaths or serious injury due to the extent of the collapse.
Naveed Hussain had previously received enforcement notices for activities on another site surrounding his failures in planning the work. It was considered that the present incident had been caused by a failure to manage and plan the works on site properly.
Rizwan Hussain was given a 12 month custodial sentence and fined £42k with £40k costs after he pleaded guilty to breaches of the HSWA and CDM Regulations 2007, and he further admitted breaching two prohibition notices issued in May 2013. Naveed Hussain too received a 12 month custodial sentence, with a fine of £40k and costs of £60k, after admitting breaches of the HSWA and CDM Regulations 2007.
When sentencing, HHJ Murphy stated that it was a miracle that there had been no serious injury or death caused by the incident and that a statement needed to be made to highlight the importance of taking health and safety seriously. As a result “The public would be appalled at anything less than a custodial sentence.”