A judge has sentenced a masonry firm director to 10 months in jail, suspended for two years, for allowing his employees to be exposed to hazardous stone dust.
Ghausal Islam, 52, from Willesden Green is the director of Redmist International Ltd, based at Standard Road, Park Royal in London – which is the subject of a winding-up order.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted Mr Islam and the firm at Southwark Crown Court for serious safety failings on Thursday.
It told the court the workers were exposed to dust created by polishing and grinding between January and June 2013.
The HSE said it is important to have good extraction ventilation to protect workers from dust as it can cause a range of conditions such as asthma, silicosis and lung cancer.
The factory’s ventilation system was not good enough to extract the dust and it had not been tested properly, the HSE told the court.
Improvement notices served on the firm were ignored and the situation was the same when the HSE revisited the site twice in June, the court heard.
By law it was Mr Islam’s responsibility to make sure his staff were safe, the HSE said.
Mr Islam, of Staverton Road, NW2, was sentenced for breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. On top of the suspended jail term he was ordered to pay £9,000 in costs.
The firm escaped punishment as it is not trading anymore but the judge said he would have fined it £50,000.
Copyright Press Association 2014