Scaffolding in Ely Tesco is safe, says the supermarket giant

PUBLISHED: 10:35 01 August 2018 | UPDATED: 17:14 01 August 2018

A customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: Submitted

A customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: Submitted

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Tesco have assured customers that scaffolding inside its Ely store, covering the soft drinks and cakes aisle sections, are safe after a customer raised concerns.

A customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: SubmittedA customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: Submitted

The customer, who has worked in scaffolding for 14 years, said it is not properly supported and has no barriers around it to stop toddlers inadvertently running into it or customers accidentally running into the leg posts with trolleys.

He also said there were no toe boards to prevent any debris falling onto customers from above.

But a Tesco spokesman said: “We’d like to thank the customer for raising their concerns and we have immediately contacted our contractor who has performed an extra inspection of the site.

“The contractor has confirmed the scaffolding is safe and we would encourage anyone with concerns to speak with us in store.

A customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: SubmittedA customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: Submitted

“The builders have reviewed the site and we are confident it is safe. There is foam around the lower legs of the scaffolding and signage to advise customers to use caution nearby.

“We have copies of the inspection record and safety scaffold tag which legally deems the structure safe and fit for design purpose.”

But the customer told us: “It has five uprights. Two of them should be supporting a beam and are not.

“There is no protection around the scaffold so toddlers can run round and knock into the structure or careless shoppers can knock it with their trolleys as there are no barriers around.

A customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: SubmittedA customer is concerned that scaffolding in Tesco, Ely, is not safe. Tesco says it has been checked and conforms to safety regulations. PHOTO: Submitted

“The scaffold has been adapted, but it still isn’t fit for “design purposes” it doesn’t comply with TG20 which is the industry standard, therefore it should be built to a design.

“No designer would put their name to that especially seeing as there are still no toe boards to stop falling debris.

“I have added the photos to Scaffmag, an online forum for scaffolders and have had many scaffolders comment with shocked responses.”

The man called the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) but they said it was a job for Building Control. He rang East Cambs District Council Building Control who said it was a job for HSE.

A spokesman for East Cambs District Council said: “Scaffolding is not a structure as set out in S76,77,78 of the Building Act therefore we do not have any regulatory powers over its erection.”

A spokesman for the Health and Safety Executive said: “We have made enquiries with the store and they have informed us that they are carrying our short-term maintenance work on the air conditioning systems.

“It is therefore not classified as construction activity and the enforcing authority for any concerns would be the environmental health department (not building control) in the Local Authority area that covers Ely.”

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