Health and safety officials were alerted after a shocked passer-by took this picture of a man balanced on the roof
The prosecution came after a concerned member of the public snapped the picture showing a man standing halfway down the sloping roof using a jet washer to clear moss and debris.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) were alerted to the dangerous work and an inspector visited the house later the same day.
The organisation immediately banned workers from IQ Roofing Solutions from carrying out further work at the site in Tyldesley, Wigan until scaffolding had been put in place.
Trafford magistrates’ court heard that the firm’s managing director Stuart Bell had visited the site on the morning the picture was taken and knew scaffolding was not in place.
The company also failed to provide proof of Employers’ Liability Insurance – a requirement under UK law – which allows workers to claim compensation if they suffer a workplace injury.
The court heard that the company had previously been served with a Prohibition Notice in 2011 relating to unsafe roof work.
IQ Roofing Solutions pleaded guilty to two breaches of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 and one breach of the Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969.
The company, of Nelson Street in Tyldesley, was fined £3,000 and ordered to pay £2,000 prosecution costs.
Bell, of the same address, was fined £1,000 and ordered to pay prosecution costs of £1,619 after admitting two breaches of the Work at Height Regulations 2005.
The HSE said falls from heights were responsible for around one-third of work-placed deaths each year, with 25 people losing their lives in 2012/13.
Speaking after the hearing, HSE Inspector Laura Moran said thanked the member of the public for alerting them to the incident and said they helped to save lives.
She said: “Both IQ Roofing Solutions and Stuart Bell put workers’ lives in danger by allowing them onto a slippery roof without safety measures in place.
“This meant that workers could have been badly injured if they had slipped and fallen to the ground below.