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Manchester scaffolder faces jail for breaching safety law

Pictured: Terrance Murray, 27, leaving Manchester Magistrates’ Court yesterday 

A scaffolder could be jailed after he was photographed working at 60 feet wearing a harness that wasn’t secured to anything.

Terrance Murray, 27, was erecting scaffolding at the side of a six storey building when he was unknowingly snapped by a retired health and safety inspector.

Now the daredevil is facing up to six months in prison after he admitted breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act.

His stunt happened as he was constructing scaffolding at the rear of the Grade II-listed Sunlight House in Manchester, on June 30 last year as part of work to renovate the windows.

The photo shows him looking directly into the offices of the Crown Prosecution Service, which occupies some of the building.

His apprentice can be seen working further down the scaffolding. 

Murray, an experienced scaffolder, can be seen standing on planks without having first erected a rail to stop him toppling over the side, as required.

In the photograph, he is wearing a harness but it isn’t connected to the scaffolding.

Dangerous: Murray, pictured top, was unknowingly photographed by a retired health and safety inspector when he was working on scaffolding without wearing a secured harness 

Dangerous: Murray, pictured top, was unknowingly photographed by a retired health and safety inspector when he was working on scaffolding without wearing a secured harness 

When he appeared at Manchester and Salford Magistrates’ Court yesterday, he admitted a single breach of health and safety law under his full name Terrance Tyson Murray.

Murray, of Blackburn, pleaded guilty to failing to take reasonable care for either himself or others who may have been affected by his acts and omissions while at work.

In court: Murray admitted breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act

In court: Murray admitted breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act

District Judge Mark Hadfield adjourned the case when Murray, who was not represented by a lawyer, admitted he hadn’t realised he could be sent to prison for the offence.

When Judge Hadfield suggested he get himself a lawyer, Murray said: ‘What if I can’t afford it?’

The judge replied: ‘That’s a matter for you. If I were you, I’d get legal representation.’

The case was adjourned until February 20 to allow Murray to consider getting a lawyer.

After the hearing, HM inspector of health and safety Matt Greenly said: ‘The potential for his actions was the death of a young man. This is a situation which could easily have been avoided. He had all the right equipment.

‘He chose for some unknown reason to take his life in his own hands that day.’

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