The boss of a care home in Hartlepool has been given a prison sentence after his ‘reckless disregard’ caused the death of a resident. Norah Elliott, aged 90 years old, died after climbing out from an unrestricted window and falling from the conservatory directly below.
The incident took place in October of 2012 at the Parkview Care Home in Seaton Carew. Ms Elliott, who suffered from senile dementia, was unsupervised when she climbed from her bedroom window and, after walking across a conservatory roof, fell into the garden below, sustaining massive head injuries. She was taken to nearby James Cook University Hospital where she later died.
Matt Matharu, owner of Parkview Care Home, was charged with breaking Health & Safety legislation by failing to install a window restrictor to the window in Mrs Elliot’s bedroom. Matharu denied the charge but was found guilty by Judge Michael Taylor, who handed down a sentence of eight months imprisonment for Matharu’s ‘reckless disregard’ in twice breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act.
Matharu said in court that he believed Mrs Elliott to have suffered ‘an awful accident’ and claimed that someone ‘must have removed’ the window restrictor he had previously installed. The prosecution dismissed his claims and said that the case “boiled down to a failure in the duty to protect someone who could not protect themselves".
As can be seen from the tragic events in this case, window and door restrictors are essential to protect human lives as well as being a legal requirement in buildings such as schools, hotels, offices and anywhere else where falling may pose a risk. Mercer & Sons are proud suppliers of the Jackloc, one of the best door and window restrictors available to purchase on the market today for either domestic or commercial use.
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