The Leading News & Information Service For The Facilities, Workplace & Built Environment Community

Weather Hit Waterstones Sign Kills Employee

14 January 2015 | Updated 01 January 1970
 

A fatal injury occurred earlier this week when a staff member at the Blackpool branch of Waterstones in Blackpool was crushed when a sign, loosened by high winds, fell on her.

The death of Margaret Sheridan, 68, occurred on Monday evening at approximately 17.30pm when a sign at the front of the shop in Bank Hey Street fell and trapped her.

Despite the efforts of passers by and emergency services, Ms Sheridan was confirmed dead at the scene.

A joint inquiry has been launched by Lancashire Constabulary and Blackpool Council and it is thought that it is inevitable investigators will see if the extreme weather conditions could have weakened the shop sign.

Waterstones has issued a statement on the tragic incident: ‘Waterstones confirms that a tragic accident at its Blackpool shop has resulted in the death of one of its booksellers. Margaret Sheridan was a much loved and well respected colleague. We offer our deepest condolences to her family. The accident is being investigated by the authorities.’

TWIFM asked a company representative the following questions:

1. Following the tragic accident, has Waterstones instigated a risk assessment for its other stores?

 

2. Given the prior warning of gale force weather, does Waterstones have a system in place to check on safety, especially exterior shop signs?

The spokesperson declined to answer these questions and replied: ‘We are at the moment unable to give any further comment or confirm further detail, as there is an investigation underway.’

A witness, who preferred not to be named, told the BBC that Bank Hey Street was "known for being a bit of a wind-trap….It's a very, very windy street. It's not the first sign to fall down."

Talking to TWIFM, a spokesman for Blackpool Council stated that although there had been an interim meeting between its officials and the Lancashire Police, it was 'too early to speculate' on the cause of the accident and on whether the particular nature of the street had led to the death.

 

Pictured: A Waterstones’ sign killed a staff member on Monday. Are signs, like this one in Nottingham, also at risk in the current stormy weather?

Article written by Mike Gannon | Published 14 January 2015

Share


Related Tags


Related Articles

Over 60s Account for 30% of Workplace Fatalities 

Annual workplace fatality figures from the Health and Safety Executive highlight the risks to older workers, with around 30 per cent of fatal injuries in...

 Read Full Article
No Space For Complacency – Storm Contingency Plans

Vicky Lopez, co-founder and director of De-ice, provides her advice on storm contingency planning for UK Businesses Given the relatively uneventful winter we have seen...

 Read Full Article
Could The Weather Turn As Slippery As Our Politicians?

With the election fast approaching, what's the worst that could happen for those responsible for keeping the polling booths open on the big day? Well, the weather...

 Read Full Article
Hot, Hot, Hot - Bye, Bye To Hottest Decade

As we ring in the New Year, we will also be ringing out the warmest decade on record. And when viewed alongside 2016, the warmest year on record and dominated by a...

 Read Full Article
The Weather Cockpit Pilots Gritting Service

A winter gritting service provider have formed a partnership with UBIMET, a global provider of meteorological forecast systems and information, to bring customers The...

 Read Full Article
A Hard Rains A-Gonna Fall?

The weather out there is frightful - for some...so what does the forecast predict for next week and for the month ahead as we head into December?   Friday...

 Read Full Article
HSE Injury And Ill-Health Statistics Released

October 30 saw the HSE releases the annual injury and ill-health statistics for Great Britain showing that 28.2 million working days were lost due to work-related illness...

 Read Full Article
AI To Predict And Control Buildings' Energy Demands

BP has expanded its digital energy portfolio by investing in energy management platform, Grid Edge - AI technology predicts, optimises and controls a building’s...

 Read Full Article
Maintenance Man Dies In Waterloo Travelator Horror

A man working on a moving walkway at London Waterloo Underground Station has died after he got trapped whilst undertaking early morning maintenance work. British...

 Read Full Article
Clancy Docwra Hit With £1 Million Fatality Fine

Clancy Docwra and one of its employees have been sentenced after a worker was struck by an excavator and was killed. The company was fined £1 million and ordered to...

 Read Full Article