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UK Work Injury Claims

In the UK, work injury claims enable you to recover compensation when you have been injured at work due to the negligence of your employer. Work injury claims do not necessarily have to be prompted by an accident, as many occupational illnesses develop over a period of time, and if you have been diagnosed with a condition which is attributable to the environment in which you work/have worked, you should be eligible to make work injury claims in the UK. For further information about making claims for compensation against an employer, speak with a work injury claims solicitor on our freephone helpline in complete confidentiality and with no obligation on you to proceed with UK work injury claims.

Employers Suffer Severe Chemical Burns in a Workplace Accident

January 5, 2017

Two employees of a North East engineering company suffered severe chemical burns in a workplace accident due to inappropriate equipment being supplied.

On 31st July 2014, two employees of PSL Worldwide Projects Ltd were trying to clean a pipe system at a site in Cramlington, Northumberland. While they were cleaning the system with Sodium Hydroxide granules, a chemical reaction occurred between the granules and the water they were using, causing the liquid to heat up and create intense pressure within the hose.

Due to the intense pressure, the hose detached and sprayed both employees with the hazardous solution. Both employees suffered severe chemical burns in a workplace accident – one receiving life threatening burns to his back, buttocks, arms, leg, neck, and one side of his face. The other receiving burns to the right side of his head, neck, back, left arm and behind his right ear.

Officers from the Health and Safety Executive investigated the cause of the accident and discovered that an inadequate risk assessment had been conducted prior to the two employees being assigned the job, the hosing provided for the job not suitable for the solution, and that PSL Worldwide Projects had failed to provide adequate personal protective equipment to the two employees.

PSL Worldwide Projects was prosecuted for breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and found guilty of being responsible for the severe chemical burns in a workplace accident by Bedlington Magistrates´ Court last November. Sentencing was referred to Newcastle Crown Court, who this week fined the company £150,000.

Speaking after the sentencing hearing, HSE inspector Laura Catterall commented: “If a suitable risk assessment had been undertaken it would have identified that the equipment being used was not right for the chemicals or the work being carried out. All companies who work with high hazard chemicals should learn from this case and ensure that their workers are properly protected.”

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Court Issues £3 Million Fine for Workplace Injuries at a Chemical Plant

November 10, 2016

Hull Crown Court has issued fines totalling £3 million for breaches of health and safety regulations that resulted in workplace injuries at a chemical plant.

On March 5, 2010, forty-eight year old Paul Doyley was working at the Crystal Pigment chemical plant in Grimsby, when a build-up of Titanium Tetrachloride within the vessel he was working beneath leaked from its tank, came into contact with water and created a violent explosion.

The explosion ruptured the vessel above Paul´s head, showering him with corrosive liquid. As two colleagues came to his aid, the mixture of the liquid and the air created a toxic vapour cloud, causing Paul and one of his colleagues to sustain internal lung damage.

The toxic vapour cloud expanded quickly and blew from the chemical plant across the River Humber – closing the shipping lanes for a period of time. The Humberside Fire and Rescue Service attended, and the incident was brought under control after several hours.

Paul was taken by ambulance to Wakefield´s Pinderfield Hospital, where he received specialist treatment for his workplace injuries at a chemical plant. Tragically he died from his injuries two weeks later – an inquest into his death recording a narrative verdict.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) launched an investigation into the incident and found that Paul´s employers had deviated from the normal procedures for the management of Titanium Tetrachloride. Inspectors also identified a lack of safety procedures and systems of work to assess and control risk.

Crystal Pigment UK Ltd was prosecuted under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations 1999 for breaches that resulted in workplace injuries in a chemical plant. The company pleaded guilty to the charges, and a sentencing hearing took place at Hull Crown Court.

After hearing that there had been a second uncontrolled release of a toxic vapour in July 2011 during the cleaning of a redundant vessel, the court issued fines totalling £3 million for the breaches of health and safety regulations that resulted in workplace injuries at a chemical plant and also ordered Crystal Pigment UK Ltd to pay £37,868 in costs.

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Employer Pleads Guilty in Car Mechanic Injured at Work Case

October 25, 2016

The employer of a car mechanic injured at work has pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act at a hearing of Preston Magistrates Court.

In November 2014, thirty-four year old Stuart Currey from Morecambe in Lancashire was cleaning out a vehicle inspection pit at Pye Motors, when an apprentice drove a Ford Transit over the top of the inspection pit, unaware that Stuart was working inside of it.

Stuart was caught by the bottom of the Ford Transit and dragged along the floor for ten metres before the driver became aware of his screams. Work colleagues jacked the vehicle off of Stuart, and he was airlifted to the Royal Preston Hospital suffering from multiple injuries to his pelvis, hips, ribs, shoulder and spine.

Stuart remained in hospital for five weeks and now relies on crutches to assist his mobility. Due to the nature of his injuries, Stuart has one leg shorter than the other, will never be able to work as a car mechanic again and is unable to play with his four daughters.

An investigation into the car mechanic injured at work accident was launched by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), who subsequently prosecuted Stuart´s employer for breaching Section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

Pye Motors pleaded guilty to the charges at Preston Magistrates Court earlier this week, paving the way for Stuart to claim compensation for a car mechanic injured at work. Speaking after the Magistrates hearing, Stuart´s solicitor told press reporters:

“Stuart is determined to get answers about what happened to him and his former employers taking responsibility for what happened to him is a major step forward. We are now helping Stuart and Natasha in a civil claim against his former employers in a bid to secure him the funds he will require to continue his rehabilitation and physiotherapy”.

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Essex School Fined for Maintenance Worker´s Fall from Height

August 11, 2016

An Essex school has been fined £40,000 and ordered to pay £1,477 costs for a maintenance worker´s fall from height at a hearing of Chelmsford Crown Court.

Keith Chandler (63) was a member of a maintenance team restoring the Grade II listed Newnum House when, on February 17th2015, he fell 2.6 metres from the roof of a bay window he was helping to repair. As a result of the maintenance worker´s fall from height. Keith suffered five damaged vertebrae a bruised kidney and a hairline fracture of his shoulder.

Despite being able to return to work within six weeks, Keith is still unable to climb ladders or lift heavy loads eighteen months after his maintenance worker´s fall from height. The accident has also had an impact on his personal live. The pain Keith experiences in his back prevents him from enjoying his leisure time playing with his grandchildren.

An investigation into the maintenance worker´s fall from height was launched by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Inspectors found that Keith´s employers – the Brentwood School in Essex, on whose grounds the listed building is located – had breached Regulation 4(1) of the Work at Height Regulations 2005 by failing to conduct a risk assessment or install guardrails.

The HSE prosecuted the Brentwood School´s trust – the Brentwood School Charitable Incorporated Organisation – and a hearing to hear the charges was held this week at the Chelmsford Crown Court before Judge Charles Gratwicke.

At the hearing, Judge Gratwicke was told that although health and safety policies existed, they were rarely enforced. The school´s former maintenance manager – Anthony Bridger – told the judge that the policies were difficult to enforce because the maintenance team consisted of tradesmen who were “old school and just wanted to get on with the job in the easiest way”.

Representatives of the Brentwood School acknowledged that the work was not closely supervised and admitted liability for the maintenance worker´s fall from height. Judge Gratwicke fined the school £40,000 and ordered it pay £1,477 costs – commenting that the outcome could have been much more serious if Keith had landed on his head when he fell.

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British Woman Awarded Au$12 Million Compensation for Quadbike Injuries

July 20, 2016

A British woman has been awarded Au$12 million compensation for quadbike injuries she sustained while herding cattle on a dairy farm in Tasmania.

Holly Raper from Chorley in Lancashire was on a backpacking holiday in Australia in December 2011, when she took a job at the King Island Dairy Farm in Tasmania. Shortly after she started working at the farm, Holly – who was twenty-one years of age at the time – was asked to round up cattle using a quadbike.

Tragically, while herding the cattle, Holly had an accident and fell from the vehicle. She suffered a catastrophic brain injury that left her in a coma for several months. Due to the severity of the injury, Holly is now quadriplegic and requires around-the-clock care due to not be able to communicate or feed herself.

After being flown home in Chorley in March 2013, Holly´s parents claimed compensation for quadbike injuries from the owners of the King Island Dairy Farm – David and Jocelyn Bowden. The Bowden´s denied responsibility for Holly´s injuries and contested the claim for compensation for quadbike injuries on the grounds that Holly´s accident had been caused by her own lack of care.

However, solicitors investigating the accident found that the quadbike had several defects including faulty brakes, a worn steering mechanism and a rear wheel fitted back to front. It was also discovered that Holly had not been given a helmet to wear or instructed on how to ride the quadbike over the terrain.

A hearing to resolve the claim for compensation for quadbike injuries was scheduled for April; and, as Holly´s medical experts were located in the UK, Judge Steven Estcourt flew to Manchester to hear three weeks of testimony. When the hearing concluded in Hobart, Judge Estcourt found in Holly´s favour – finding the Bowden´s negligent and liable for her injuries.

After dismissing the claims of contributory negligence, the judge awarded Holly Au$12 million compensation for quadbike injuries. After deductions for legal costs and the support she has already received from the Tasmanian Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Tribunal, the balance will be put into a UK trust to pay for Holly´s future care.

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Care Worker Receives Injury Compensation for a Fall Down a Lift Shaft

January 4, 2016

A care worker from Cardiff has received in excess of £50,000 injury compensation for a fall down a lift shaft at the care home at which she worked.

The tragic accident occurred on 6th March, 2012, when Carol Conway (52) was taking 96- year-old resident from her second floor bedroom at the Pontcanna House Care Home in Cardiff to the ground floor for her breakfast.

Carol wheeled Mrs Lewis to the door of the second floor lift and waited for it to arrive. When the bell indicated the lift had arrived, Carol unlocked the door to the lift and reversed Mrs Lewis´ wheelchair to back her into the lift.

Due to a technical fault, the platform of the lift had not moved from the ground floor. As Carol walked in backwards with Mrs Lewis, both fell twenty feet – Mrs Lewis dying from her injuries and Carol suffering multiple broken bones and internal injuries.

An investigation into the accident found that, just weeks before the accident, an engineer had locked the second floor lift access and considered it unfit for use. However, the owners of the care home – Shirwan and Nasik Al-Mufti – had allowed care workers to override the safety mechanism with an emergency access key.

Shirwan and Nasik Al-Mufti were fined £75,000 and ordered to pay £25,000 in costs by Cardiff Crown Court in August 2015 after being prosecuted by the HSE for breaches of health and safety regulations. With liability established for the accident, Carol sought legal advice and claimed injury compensation for a fall down a lift shaft.

Carol did not reveal to a local reporter the exact amount of the compensation settlement, but indicated it was in excess of £50,000 when she told him: “the money will never change that terrible day. I think about it constantly. My heart goes out to May and her family. I am so sorry she died the way she did – it´s tragic”.

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Solicitors Instructed to Pursue Compensation for an Injured Lorry Driver

August 11, 2015

Solicitors have been instructed to pursue compensation for an injured lorry driver who was badly hurt after helping a transit van driver pass his vehicle.

HGV driver John Finney (42) – from Harthill in South Yorkshire – was making a delivery to the Station Hotel in Finningley near Doncaster when, in April 2015, he interrupted his delivery to help a transit van driver manoeuvre passed his vehicle and into the hotel car park.

When he was satisfied that the transit van had cleared his lorry, John returned to unloading his HGV and started lowering the tail-lift. While he was focusing on the tail-lift, the transit van drove into John – pinning him against the tail-lift and then dragging him along its solid edge.

John was rushed to by ambulance to Doncaster Royal Infirmary suffering from back, leg and rib injuries. He remained in intensive care for eleven days and underwent two surgeries to remove his appendix and part of his bowel before being discharged.

John is still recovering from his injuries and has been unable to work since the accident. He is unlikely ever to enjoy his previous hobbies of keep-fit and motor cycling and finds everyday events difficult because of his ongoing pain – such as eating dinner with his family.

The van driver responsible for John´s accident was given seven penalty points and fined for his negligence. John then instructed solicitors to commence legal action and pursue compensation for an injured lorry driver to account for his pain and suffering, his loss of income and the cost of rehabilitation.

Speaking about his claim for compensation for an injured lorry driver, John said: “This incident has had a huge impact on my life as I can no longer do the things I have always enjoyed. I loved to keep fit and take part in charity walks, but I know that for the time-being those activities are a distant memory for me. I hope by speaking out it makes drivers think carefully about how they drive in future.”

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£180,000 Paid in Compensation for Teacher Accidents in Scottish Schools

December 29, 2014

More than £180,000 was paid in compensation for teacher accidents in Scottish schools during 2013/14 according to figures from the Educational Institute of Scotland.

The figures revealed that settlements of compensation for teacher accidents in Scottish schools included £50,000 for a teacher who suffered a severe head injury as a consequence of slipping and falling on ice in a playground, and £25,000 for a teacher who badly broke his ankle when tripping and falling on school grounds.

Commenting on the figures, Larry Flanagan – the General Secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland – said: “Compensation payments are made because some employers continue to fail to protect their staff from avoidable workplace injuries. These can often be avoided by effective risk assessment and correct adherence to simple health and safety procedures.”

Mr Flanagan was also scathing about the role of insurance companies in paying compensation for teacher accidents in Scotland. He commented: “The total compensation bill would decline dramatically if insurance companies admitted liability earlier thereby avoiding the accrual of unnecessary medical and legal bills”.

A spokesperson for the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities argued that teaching in Scotland is a safe profession and that local authorities take the well-being of staff seriously. He noted that there are over 50,000 teachers and over 700,000 pupils in school and pre-school in Scotland and accidents will occasionally take place.

It has also become harder for injured employees to claim compensation for teacher accidents since changes were made to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme and the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act. Whereas previously a conviction by the Health and Safety Executive for a breach of Health and Safety regulations would make an employer liable in a civil acclaim for compensation, injured teachers now have to prove that their employer´s negligence was the cause of their injury.

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EAT Provides Opportunity to Claim Compensation for Unpaid Overtime in Vacation Pay

November 7, 2014

This week´s ruling by the Employment Appeal Tribunal – that payment for regular extra hours worked by an employee should be included in their holiday pay – has provided an opportunity for workers to claim compensation for unpaid overtime in vacation pay.

The ruling came in respect of two cases – Bear Scotland Ltd v Fulton & BaxterHertel (UK) Ltd v Wood & Ors; and Amec Group Ltd v Law & Others – in which the union Unite had challenged the interpretation of the UK Working Time Directive.

Representing electricians, scaffolders and semi-skilled operatives who worked at the West Burton power station site in Nottinghamshire, the union claimed that the employees regularly worked overtime but, as overtime payments were not included in their holiday pay, they received considerably less money when they took holidays compared to when they were working.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal agreed with the union´s arguments, but imposed conditions on how far back employees could claim for unpaid overtime in vacation pay – limiting retrospective claims to any holiday that an employee has taken in the past three months.

However, the wording of the ruling by the Employment Appeal Tribunal has made it a possibility that some employees may be able to claim compensation for unpaid overtime in vacation pay for up to six years by suing their employer for breach of contract.

In its ruling, the Employment Appeal Tribunal said that “overtime required to be worked by workers under their contract constitutes part of their normal pay”. The Tribunal added that if an employee´s vacation pay did not include their regular overtime payments it constituted an “unlawful deduction from wages”.

Under the Employment Rights Act 1996, an “unlawful deduction from wages” represents a breach of contract by the employer and employees would be entitled to claim compensation for unpaid overtime in vacation pay going back six years – the maximum time allowed for a breach of contract claim in the UK.

Employees, who may be entitled to up to six years of retrospective vacation pay, should speak with a solicitor at the earliest possible opportunity to establish whether they have a claim for unpaid overtime in vacation pay which is worth their while to pursue and to be given information about the legal options available to them.

Please note: This week´s ruling by the Employment Appeal Tribunal affects only regular overtime payments. Employees who regularly receive commission payments in their “normal pay” – but not in their holiday pay – will have to wait until February 2015 when the Tribunal will review the decision of the Court of Justice of the European Union in Lock v British Gas Trading Ltd.

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Supermarket Fined for Tesco Worker Foot Accident

January 3, 2014

Tesco has received a substantial fine from Southwark Crown Court after an investigation into a Tesco worker foot accident revealed failings in health and safety procedures.

On 7th August 2009, Mohammed Ferdous (31) was working in the basement of the Tesco Metro store in Victoria, central London, when he was asked to assist with a fresh food delivery. His role involved waiting at the lift entrance in the basement, retrieving cages of food sent down from the street level and returning the empty cages up in the lift.

When the second load descended, Mohammed stepped forward to retrieve the cages and used his right foot as leverage to help him extract them from the lift. Mohammed inadvertently placed his foot into a gap between the floor of the lift and the lift shaft and, when the lift car suddenly shifted down, his foot was crushed by the weight of the lift car.

Colleagues were unable to free Mohammed´s foot for ten minutes, during which time his toes were irreparably damaged and had to be amputated. Mohammed will never be able to walk normally again and was unable to work for more than a year after the accident.

Mohammed made a claim for Tesco worker foot accident injury compensation, which was settled for an undisclosed amount in 2013; however Tesco was prosecuted – along with lift maintenance company Otis – after an investigation into the accident revealed that no maintenance inspections had been conducted on the lift during a nine-month period.

Both Tesco and Otis were charged with contravening health and safety regulations, contrary to Section 33 (1) (c) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and, after pleading guilty to the charges, magistrates at Southwark Crown Court fined the supermarket giant £115,000 and Otis £110,000 for their negligence which led to the Tesco worker foot accident.

Speaking after the fines had been administered, Westminster City Council’s food, health and safety manager – James Armitage – said that the Tesco worker foot accident had been “entirely preventable” and would have been avoided if the two companies had “collectively ensured that the lift was properly maintained”.

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Compensation for Slipping on Ice at Work Awarded to School Janitor

August 27, 2013

A sixty-one year old man has been awarded £30,000 compensation for slipping on ice at work after the injuries he sustained forced him to give up work as a school janitor.

Stephen McKeown from Port Glasgow in Inverclyde sustained his injuries in November 2010 after he had been asked to cover the holiday of the regular janitor at St Francis´ Primary School in Port Glasgow, rather than work at nearby St Stephen´s High School where he usually worked.

Having arrived at St Francis´ Primary School at 7.00am, Stephen began salting the playgrounds and the paths leading to the classrooms by hand as he had done on icy days for the past eighteen year; and, as lessons began at 9.00am, Stephen moved onto other areas of the school that had a lower priority.

During the first break between lessons, he was told by two pupils if a condom that had been discarded on one of the classroom fire escapes and, as he was ascending the steps of the fire escape, he slipped on an icy step and fell – injuring his leg and damaging his back.

As he was unable to continue his job as a janitor due to his injuries, Inverclyde Council – Stephen´s employers – terminated his work contract in November 2011.

Stephen made a compensation claim for slipping on ice at work – a claim which has denied by Inverclyde Council on the grounds that they had a system of work in place for clearing icy paths and steps which – they claimed – Stephen had failed to follow.

Nonetheless, Stephen pursued his claim for compensation for slipping on ice at work and, last week at the Court of Session Outer House, Lord Burns found that Inverclyde Council were in breach of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992.

Lord Burns found that Inverclyde Council´s safe system of work existed only on paper, and had never been put into practice. Criticising the council for failing to advise Stephen of the safest system of work or tell him that work equipment was available that could have prevented his accident, Lord Burns awarded Stephen £30,000 compensation for slipping on ice at work.

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Smaller Compensation Claims for Personal Injuries to be Settled Quicker

August 5, 2013

Smaller compensation claims for personal injuries are to be settled quicker following reforms introduced by the Legal Aid, Sentencing & Punishment of Offenders Act which came into place on 1st August 2013.

The new Civil Procedure Rules governing court action in England and Wales have been amended in order to reduce the time it takes to settle personal injury claims with a value of up to £25,000 when a single party is responsible for an injury occurring and liability is admitted by their insurance company.

Not all compensation claims for personal injuries fall under the new rules – for example, claims for medical negligence still have to go through a lengthy process – but most claims for personal injuries in road traffic accidents, personal injuries sustained in an accident at work and those acquired in a place of public access (public liability claims) should be settled up to three months quicker than previously.

The reforms are being applied to the Ministry of Justice´s “claims portal” – a database on which solicitors register their clients´ claims – and whereas previously insurance companies could take twenty-one days to acknowledge receipt of a solicitor´s “Letter of Claim”, they now have to act within 24 hours.

Furthermore, insurance companies could previously take 90 days before informing a solicitor whether or not they accepted their policyholder´s responsibility for an accident and injury. They are now allowed only 30 days in the case of claims for personal injuries in road traffic accidents and public liability claims, and 40 days when a claimant has suffered an injury at work due to their employer´s negligence.

Should insurance companies fail to adhere to the new regulations, the claim will be removed from the Ministry of Justice´s claims portal and any increase in costs will have to be assumed by the insurance company irrespective of whether they successfully defend the claim or not.

The new rules apply to compensation claims for personal injuries in which an injury has been diagnosed on or after the 1st August, and only apply to injuries sustained in England and Wales that the claimant was not partly responsible for due to their own lack of care. Further exclusions apply to the reforms applied to compensation claims for personal injuries and therefore it is always in your best interests to discuss the nature of your accident and injury with a solicitor at the first moment possible.

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Appeal Court Awards Compensation for a Workers Hand Injury

June 25, 2013

The Court of Session has awarded compensation for a workers hand injury following a successful appeal by an employee of Chivas Brothers – the world-famous whisky manufacturer

Lord Drummond Young at the Court of Session allowed the claim for a workers hand injury after hearing how Carol Kennedy from Dumbarton sustained an injury in October 2009 while working at the Chivas Brother bottling plant at Kilmalid.

Carol had been trying to manoeuvre a trolley laden with bottle caps weighing 380Kg, when the swivelling wheels of the trolley became misaligned and locked. As Carol attempted to pull the cage of the trolley through a narrow space between plant machinery, her hand was crushed between the cage and an autocol machine.

Carol made a claim for a workers hand injury against her employers – who she claimed were in breach of the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 – however her case was dismissed by Dumbarton´s Sheriff Court in June 2012.

However, on appeal to the Court of Session, Lord Young found that Carol´s diminutive stature presented a foreseeable risk of injury and that Chivas Brothers were negligent in allowing an employee of 5’ 3” to manoeuvre a trolley through a cramped space when the height of the load prevented her from seeing where she was going.

Lord Young awarded Carol £5,321 compensation for a workers hand injury, stating that Carol could not be criticised for attempting to free the locked wheels of the trolley or for failing to seek the assistance of one of her work colleagues.

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Man Suffers Personal Injuries at Work due to an Inadequate Risk Assessment

May 29, 2013

A London company has been fined more than £6,000 after being found liable for an employee suffering personal injuries at work due to an inadequate risk assessment.

The unnamed employee had suffered a severe cut to his forearm while deboning a lamb shoulder at the Rare Butchers of Distinction site on the Chiltonian Industrial Estate in July 2012 and, after receiving emergency medical treatment, had to undergo three months of intensive physiotherapy to regain the strength in his left hand and thumb.

Rare Butchers of Distinction were charged with offences against the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 after an HSE Investigation discovered that employees were given wrist-length chain mail gloves rather than the elbow-length gloves that would have offered better protection against cuts to the forearm.

At the subsequent hearing at Westminster Magistrates Court, an HSE official said that the employee´s accident was ‘entirely preventable’ and that the company were guilty of allowing one of their workers to suffer personal injuries at work due to an inadequate risk assessment.

The Lewisham company were also charged with a breach of the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) Act 1995 as they had taken twenty-nine days to notify the HSE of the personal injuries at work due to an inadequate risk assessment, rather than the ten days required by law.

Rare Butchers of Distinction pleaded guilty to both charges at Westminster Magistrates Court, and were fined £2,750 by the magistrates with costs of £3,690.

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Company Found Responsible for an Employee Accident due to a Lack of Training

May 24, 2013

A mince producing company in Derbyshire has been fined more than £32,000 after being found liable for an employee accident due to a lack of training.  

The accident occurred at the Ilkeston mince producing plant belonging to Loscoe Chilled Foods in November 2011, when a male employee was attempting to remove a piece of meat which was stuck between the blades of a mincing machine.

The employee took off the safety guard stopping access to the blades of the machine even though they had not yet stopped spinning and severed the tip of his left index finger. The injured man was taken to hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery to reconnect the top of his left index finger.

The employee´s accident and injury was reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) under RIDDOR regulations, and a subsequent HSE investigation found that the safety guard protecting the blades on the machine should only have been removed using a specific safety procedure which the employee had not be trained in.

The HSE found Loscoe Chilled Foods responsible for the employee accident due to a lack of training and the company in breach of Section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and Regulation 11 of the provision and Use of Work Equipment Act 1998.

Loscoe Chilled Foods pleaded guilty to being in breach of the regulations at South Derbyshire Magistrates Court and, after hearing that an HSE inspection had previously identified the risk of an employee accident due to a lack of training, the Magistrates fined the company £16,000 for their breach of regulations with a further £16,192 added for costs.

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Worker awarded Accident Compensation for Falling Down Stairs

April 12, 2013

A maintenance worker at a police station, who was forced to retire early due to a back injury, has been awarded £17,000 accident compensation for falling down stairs.

The 61-year-old´s accident occurred in November 2008 when, as he started to descend the stairs into the basement of the West Yorkshire Police headquarters, he slipped on the top stair and fell down the entire flight – hitting his head against the wall and straining his back as he fell.

Despite returning to work after an eight month recovery period to do only light duties, the unnamed employee was unable to continue working as a maintenance officer because of the pain he experienced whenever he had to lift something. Ultimately his accident forced him into early retirement after thirteen years in the same job.

The former maintenance worker made a claim for accident compensation for falling down stairs after seeking legal advice, on the grounds that his accident would not have happened had there been a handrail alongside the flight of stairs. It was also discovered that no risk assessment had been performed on the basement staircase in breach of health and safety regulations.

West Yorkshire Police denied their responsibility for their former employee´s injuries and court proceeding were issued for the accident claim for falling down stairs to be heard at Leeds County Court.

After hearing evidence from both sides, the judge at Leeds County Court ruled in favour of the claimant and said that there should have been a handrail by the stairs which “on the balance of probabilities” would have prevented the fall.

In awarded the former maintenance worker £17,000 accident compensation for falling down stairs which accounted not only for his injuries but also his loss of income due to the enforced early retirement.

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Claim for a Factory Foot Injury Resolved Out of Court

April 5, 2013

A Sheffield machine operator is to receive £6,500 in compensation after his claim for a factory foot injury was settled out of court by his employers.

Michael Kirby sustained his injury in an accident at the local Ross & Catherall factory at which he worked as a machine operator. The 47-year-old employee was using a scissor clamp to move five feet long alloy bars – as he had been trained to do – when one of the alloy bars fell from the clamp and landed on his left foot.

Although Michael was wearing steel toe-capped boots with a metatarsal guard, the weight of the alloy bar was so great that it fractured two metatarsal bones in his left foot. He was taken to hospital and an aircast boot fitted to his foot. Michael was also provided with crutches in order that he still had limited mobility.

Michael made a report of his factory accident to his employers, after which working practises were changed at Ross & Catherall Limited so that the alloy bars were now manoeuvred with a different type of clamp that had curved interlocking forks to reduce the risk injury to the machine operators.

Michael sought legal advice from his union and made an injury compensation claim for a factory foot injury against his employers on the grounds that he had been trained to move the alloy bars in an unsafe manner, and that no risk assessment had been carried out on the tasks performed by machine operators until after his factory accident.

Ross & Catherall Limited admitted liability for metatarsal bones injury and settled his claim for a factory foot injury for £6,500.

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Teachers Work Injury Claims Settlements Exceed £25 Million in 2012

April 3, 2013

Figures released by the UK´s largest teaching unions indicate that the value of teachers work injury claims settlements paid in 2012 exceeded £25 million.

The National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers (NASUWT) and Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) announced that they recovered £19.9 million in compensation for teachers injured at school, while the National Union of Teachers (NUT) did not reveal an overall figures obtained for its members, but who were responsible for the largest individual settlement – a teacher from the north-east being awarded £382,930 after his arm was crushed by a filing cabinet drawer.

Other individual teachers work injury claims settlements included:-

  • An award of £279,381 to a teacher who suffered a back injury and psychological trauma when she fell from a minibus due to an autistic pupil jumping on her.
  • A settlement of £240,000 to a technology teacher who developed sinus problems due to working in a poorly ventilated workshop.
  • A payment of £66,291 to a teacher from Northern Ireland, who slipped on a patch of moss and broke her leg in two places and dislocated her ankle.

Commenting on the amount of compensation paid to teachers for injuries at work, NASUWT general secretary Chris Keates said: “Behind every one of these cases is a person who has been damaged physically or mentally. The distress and pressure of the incident to the individual teacher and their family has often been compounded by years of legal action and court proceedings before any award is made. While compensation is important, it can never make up for the fact that many of these teachers suffer permanent physical and mental injury and often cannot continue in their chosen career.”

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Work Broken Back Injury Claim Resolved Out of Court

March 9, 2013

A Swissport baggage handler , who sustained severe back injuries after being hit by a buggy pulling luggage, has settled his work broken back injury claim against his employers out of court.

Mr Mick Draper (64) from Braintree in Essex, was working for air cargo company Swissport at Stansted Airport in March 2009 when he sustained his injury. A luggage buggy, used for transporting trailers full of passenger’s checked bags, drove into Mick and knocked him several feet onto a luggage transportation chute.

Mr Draper, although in pain, carried on working for a number of weeks until one morning in April 2009 he arose form sleep to find that he was unable to move. Once he was referred for physiotherapy, he was diagnosed by medical specialists as having three broken bones in his back and he then had to undergo a series of re-constructive clinical operations; despite all of  which Mick still finds it stressful to walk, lift and carry out simple domestic duties.

An airport investigation into the buggy crash incident showed that the buggy driver who lost control of his luggage buggy had been allowed to work seventeen hour work shifts for the previous eleven days – despite warnings to the Swissport management that this was unsafe by union officials. Mr Draper went to a solicitor and made a work broken back injury claim against his employers.

Swissport agreed that they had allowed the health of their baggage handlers to be put at risk and agreed to an undisclosed out of court settlement of compensation in his work broken back injury claim.

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Back Accident at Work Nurse Injury Claim Upheld in Court

February 12, 2013

A back accident at work nurse injury claim has been upheld in the High Court after it was found an injury experienced by a senior nurse was not caused by her contributory negligence.

While working at the Outpatients Department Senior Sister Sue Germaine had arrived early one Monday morning in March 2008 to prepare the clinic for the forthcoming day. It was then that she discovered that contractors had moved the rows of metal seating in the waiting area to lay new flooring and failed to replace them during the previous weekend.

She proceeded to ask porters to move the rows of seating as they were obstructing the doors to the consultation rooms in the clinic, but was advised that they were too busy elsewhere to perform the task. She also asked if somebody from the maintenance department could come and perform the task, but was advised that it was not their duty and they reported the situation to the project manager responsible for overseeing the contractor´s work the previous weekend.

On patients began to arrive – some of whom were elderly and needed a seat – Sister Germaine chose to take it upon herself to replace the metal rows of seating. However, as she moved the last one into its correct position she injured her back. The incident was reported through her line manager and incident forms were filed in April and May for official record.

Havign sought legal advice, Sister Germaine kicked off a back accident at work nurse injury claim against the Epsom and St Heller University Hospitals NHS Trust for compensation in respect of the pain and suffering she had experienced and also for the loss of income and earnings due to having to leave her occupation due to her injury.

Liability was admitted by the NHS Trust for Sister Germaine’s injury they alleged that, by moving the seating herself rather than wait for a porter to eventually come and help, she had been part of the the cause of her accident and injury by not  applying her manual handling training, failing to apply her knowledge and experience as a senior nurse and by failing to use a more appropriate course of action.

Judge Simon Brown QC found in favour of Sister Germaine´s back accident at work nurse injury claim, at the High Court in London, and stated that there was no argument of contributory negligence to answer. The judge decreed that Sister Germaine had made accident reports relating to her injury which clearly identified a problem without doling out blame.

Judge Brown said that the contractors, project manager and hospital porters had neglected to do their jobs in an appropriate manner and the manual handling training Sister Germaine had been given was to deal with to the moving of patients and not hospital furniture. In the circumstances surrounding the accident, it had not been reasonably practicable to expect Sister Germaine to avoid moving the seating as she had widely asked for help but had been refused it.

Sister Germaine’s back injury at work nurse injury claim will now go forward to be assessed for damages.

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BT Workers Hearing Injury Compensation Time Limit Not Up Yet

January 20, 2013

It is still possible for many former and current British Telecom engineers, who have sustained a loss of hearing or other hearing injury due to using defective testing sets, to claim BT employees hearing injury compensation.

In the legal action Watkins v British Telecommunications in August 2010, BT accepted in court that engineers involved in the tracing, testing and installing telephone lines had been provided with green and unmodified yellow testing sets which emitted loud, high-pitched tones and damaged the workers’ hearing.

Due to BT’s admission of liability, many claims for BT workers hearing injury compensation followed and, as many of the injuries had developed years before, BT revealed it would overlool the three-year Statute of Limitations which usually restricts a worker’s responsibility for workplace injuries.

However, in June of last year, BT opted to no longer allow an unrestricted time period in which to file a claim for injury compensation for BT workers’ hearing injuries, and decided that – from January 1st 2013 – any BT worker claim for hearing injury compensation would be fought if it was outside of the three-year Statute of Limitations period.

Regardless of this,past and present workers with the company who have experienced damaged hearing within the last three years due to BT´s negligence are still within the Statute of Limitations and eligible for compensation for BT workers hearing injuries to recover damages for their hearing injury.

Past and present British Telecom engineers not involved with the work on installation of the lines, but who suffered a hearing injury due to working within range of loud jack hammers and Kango hammers, and who were not given adequate protection for their hearing, are also eligible to claim compensation for BT workers hearing injuries – provided that the injury to their hearing has been discovered within the last three years.

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has recommended that any past or present BT worker experiencing damaged hearing, tinnitus or premature deafness which they think is attributable to their time working with BT to talk to a solicitor at the earliest possible opportunity.

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High Court Phurnacite Workers Claims Upheld

October 24, 2012

More than one hundred employees at the former Phurnacite plant in Abercwmboi in South Wales will be entitled to compensation following a test case at the High Court in which four Phurnacite workers claims were upheld.

The test cases were part of a Group Litigation Order on behalf of 183 former workers of British Coal, who had developed illnesses allegedly due to working at the Abercwmboi site where waste coal was processed into smokeless fuel. The occupation-related illnesses varied from lung cancer and respiratory diseases to skin and bladder cancer, and were caused – according to the claim for Phurnacite workers compensation – from working in conditions which were described in court as the “dirtiest in Europe”.

The Phurnacite workers compensation claims were made against the Department of Energy and Climate Change, who now have liability for claims made against British Coal, and alleged that British Coal had breached its statutory duties for health and safety. It was alleged in the High Court that “dust and fumes to which men were regularly exposed contained substances which were known to be harmful, indeed carcinogenic.”

After listeniong to testimony relating to the working conditions at the plant, Mrs Justice Swift found there was convincing evidence that diseases of the lung, namely Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), emphysema, chronic bronchitis and lung cancer could be caused by the dust and fumes produced during the manufacturing process of the Phurnacite briquettes. However, there was not sufficient evidence to connect the instances of skin and bladder cancer to the working environment.

The judge stated in her summing up “I decided that the operators of the plant were in breach of statutory duties owed to their employees throughout the period of its operation. There were many measures that they could have taken to minimise or eliminate altogether the risks to their workforce had they chosen to do so”. Mrs Justice Swift made awards of work injury compensation of between 4,500 pounds and 120,000 pounds to the four successful Phurnacite workers claims.

The judge´s decision not only opens the door for the other qualifying former Phurnacite workers to file claims for compensation, but also for hundreds of other former British Coal employees throughout the country who have developed work-related illnesses due to their working conditions. Settlements of Phurnacite workers injury compensation will be calculated on the extent of the individual´s injury and the consequence the injury has made to the individual´s quality of life.

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Compensation for Soldier´s Hearing Loss Settled Out of Court

July 16, 2012

A former soldier, who was forced to leave the armed forces due to sustaining a hearing injury, is to receive compensation for soldier’s hearing loss after an out of court settlement was agreed between his solicitors and the Ministry of Defence.

Michael Lee (26) had become a member of the armed forces in 2003 at the age of eighteen and had fully intended to be a career soldier until age forty. However, in 2009 the Lance Corporal was diagnosed with bilateral hearing (permanent) loss of 15dB and downgraded for promotional purposes. He was discharged from the armed services in 2011.

After seeking legal advice, Michael made a claim for soldier’s hearing loss compensation as, he alleged in his claim, his injury was attributable to excessive levels of noise at prolonged drum and bugle practice between 2004 and 2008.

The Ministry of Defence admitted liability for Michael´s injury and a negotiated settlement of compensation for soldier’s hearing loss was agreed to account for Michael´s relatively young age, his loss of future earnings and pension, and future expenses related to hearing aids.

The award of 300,000 pounds is in line with other recent compensation settlements for soldier’s hearing loss, including Charles Bradlaugh (22) – who received 330,000 pounds after suffering a hearing injury on a practise exercise in which ear plugs were not provided in 2004.

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BT Applies Limits to BT Employee´s Claims for Loss of Hearing Compensation

June 8, 2012

BT has announced that – with effect from 1st January 2013 – the company will be applying limits to BT employee´s claims for loss of hearing compensation.

This announcement reverses a decision made subsequent to the Watkins v British Telecommunications court case in August 2010, in which the company admitted that it had exposed former engineers to excessive levels of noise likely to cause injury by supplying them with unsafe oscillating and amplifying equipment to trace, install and repair BT telephone lines.

At the time of the court case, BT said that it would permit all future BT employees´ claims for loss of hearing compensation without time limitation where the engineer had been provided with green and unmodified yellow testing sets. This original announcement paved the way for many former employees who had suffered a loss of hearing to recover compensation from injuries suffered as far back as the 1960s.

Currently, BT employees and former employees who have been diagnosed with a loss of hearing attributable to the company´s negligence are able to settle their BT employees´ claims for loss of hearing compensation out of court irrespective of when their injury was diagnosed – with most claims being settled for between 5,000 pounds and 20,000 pounds depending on the extent of hearing loss.

However, from January 2013, BT intends to apply a three-year time limit on BT employees´ claims for loss of hearing compensation from the date on which a BT employee or former BT employee is diagnosed with a loss of hearing problem; after which time, should a period of more than three years elapse between the diagnosis of a loss of hearing and the receipt of a claim, the company will challenge their liability for the injury.

Although the change of policy will make little difference to current and former BT employees who recently have been diagnosed with a loss of hearing due to using the green and unmodified yellow testing sets, the Communication Employees Union (CWU) has advised any BT employee or former employee who is suffering from a loss of hearing to seek legal advice at the first practical opportunity.

Please note: Not all BT employees´ claims for loss of hearing compensation are settled out of court. In January 2012, a BT employee´s loss of hearing claim was heard in Cardiff County Court (Dew v British Telecommunications) after BT disputed the value of the former employee´s claim which included the cost of a private hearing aid. The judge upheld the claim and the former BT employee received a total of 19,372 pounds in settlement of his BT employee´s claim for loss of hearing compensation.

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Unreported Tesco Work Accidents Attract Substantial Fine

April 21, 2012

Unreported Tesco work accidents have resulted in the company receiving a substantial fine of 48,000 pounds following an investigation by Bracknell Forest Council.

The council looked into three work accidents which had happened at Tesco stores within council boundaries and found three separate events in which Tesco work accidents had not been reported to the Health and Safety Executive between May 2009 and March 2010.

The council also claimed that Tesco had failed to introduce safe working practices, train its staff or supervise them in the loading and unloading bays of the company´s supermarket in Warfield – prompting concerns that further Tesco work accidents could happen.

Tesco admitted the council work injury claims and was found to be in breach of its duty of care to employees. The company was fined 48,000 pounds for “failing to report an accident to the relevant enforcing authority” with cost of 25,000 pounds being awarded to Bracknell Forest Council.

Speaking after the investigation into the Tesco work accidents, David Steeds, Bracknell Forest’s head of environmental health, said “It’s vital that companies stick to health and safety rules so their employees remain out of danger at work. Unfortunately, Tesco failed to keep to these rules and, as a result, employees were injured – quite seriously in one of the cases – or put in harm´s way.”

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BT Employee´s Loss of Hearing Claim Heard at Cardiff County Court

January 18, 2012

A former BT employee´s loss of hearing claim has been heard at Cardiff County Court after BT disputed whether their former employee should be eligible to receive a private hearing aid.

The claimant, identified only as Mr Dew, had been employed by BT for thirty years between 1981 and 2010 as an engineer and jointer, and alleged in his compensation claim for BT employee´s hearing injury that his need to wear a hearing aid had been brought forward by fifteen years due to being exposed to high-pitched tones while testing, installing and tracing BT telephone lines.

The former BT employee explained to Cardiff County Court that he had used an NHS supplied hearing aid since December 2009 but found that it screeched whenever he placed his hand close to the device. As it was necessary from time to time to manually change the settings on the hearing aid, the high-pitched screech happened often and caused him discomfort and embarrassment.

Testimony given by a hearing expert on behalf of the claimant informed the court that former BT employee would be able to get around his hearing aid problems if he were to use a privately purchased hearing aid with Bluetooth technology which had a life expectancy of five years and cost 2,395 pounds. BT disputed this claim based on historical evidence of previous BT employee´s loss of hearing claims the company has faced.

In August 2010, during an unsuccessful defence of a BT employee´s loss of hearing claim, BT had acknowledged that the green and unmodified yellow testing sets previously supplied to the company´s telephone engineers presented a risk of injury and was a breach in their duty of care (Watkins v British Telecommunications). This admission led to many loss of hearing compensation claims by former BT employees.

However, whereas subsequent BT employee´s loss of hearing compensation claims were settled out of court, BT argued that the claimant in this case did not require a privately purchased hearing aid as an NHS device should be adequate for his loss of hearing condition.

The judge at Cardiff County Court determined that the sum claimed by the former BT employee for his loss of hearing was appropriate in the circumstances and – allowing for inflation, service charges, warranty charges and batteries – added 11,422 pounds special damages to the claimant´s general compensation for BT employee´s loss of hearing of 7,950 pounds.

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Record Work Death Compensation Case Settlement in Mining Tragedy

December 8, 2011

The biggest settlement ever recorded for a US coal mining injury compensation casehas just been revealed, with the owners of the Upper Big Branch pit in West Virginia ordered to pay 210 million dollars in damages.

The Upper Big Branch coal mine was the site of a huge explosion in April 2010 which resulted in the death of 29 miners and, after a federal investigation, it was discovered that the mine´s owner – Massey Energy – was in breach of 369 workplace safety regulations – 12 of which directly contributed to the explosion.

The new owners of the mine – Alpha Natural Resources – will be responsible for the payment of thecompensation damages which comprises of 128 million dollars for safety upgrades, training and research, 35 million dollars in fines for safety violations and 47 million dollars for relatives of the victims.

Eighteen of the families of miners who were killed in the explosion have, to date, settled their injury compensation cases for wrongful death, but many more remain outstanding – including nine claims for emotional distress made by mine employees who survived the explosion.

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Ryanair Compensation for Back Injury at Work

November 29, 2011

A former Ryanair baggage handler has been awarded £37,000 compensation damages for a back injury at work.  Damian Warcaba was injured in an incident that occurred at on July 17th, 2007, while moving aircraft stairs unassisted.  Mr Warcaba was brought to to a nearby hospital and was out of work for two months.

The normal operating procedure requires two people to manoeuvre aircraft stairs manually for almost three metres to rest against an aircraft. Ryanair contested the legal action, saying that it had given standard training to employees and regretted that the standard operating procedures where not adhered to in practice. Ryanair pointed out that Mr Warcarba had not adhered to the standard operating procedures and was therefore solely to blame for his work back injury.

Mr Justice Peter Charleton ruled that Ryanair did not provide adequate workers to make sure the correct operating procedures were followed.

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Work Back Injury Award paid to Former Ryanair Employee

November 28, 2011

A former Ryanair baggage worker has been awarded €45,000 compensation for a work back injury.  Damian Warcaba, was badly injured in an incident at Dublin Airport on July 17th, 2007, while moving aircraft stairs unassisted.  Mr Warcaba was brought to to Beaumont Hospital and was out of work for two months.

The standard operating procedure needs two people to manoeuvre aircraft stairs manually for about three metres to rest against an aircraft. Ryanair contested the case, saying that it provided standard training to workers and regretted that the standard operating procedures where not adhered to in practice. Ryanair pointed out that Mr Warcarba had breached the standard operating procedures and he was therefore solely responsible for his work back injury.

Mr Justice Peter Charleton ruled in the High Court that Ryanair did not provide sufficient workers to make sure the correct operating procedures were followed.

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Wife of Mesothelioma Deceased Awarded 258,520 Pounds

October 2, 2011

The widow of a man who passed away having suffered from mesothelioma cancer after exposure to asbestos in his workplace has been awarded 258,520 in industrial injury compensation against her husband´s former employers.

William Wolff, formerly of Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire, passed away from mesothelioma cancer in March 2007 aged 66 – just eighteen months after retiring from Weir Construction Ltd. During his employment at the construction company and previously at John Moulds (Kilmarnock) Limited, it was alleged by his widow – Elizabeth Wolff – that he had been exposed to asbestos fibres which were responsible for the injury.

Weir Construction Ltd and John Moulds (Kilmarnock) Limited accepted that the condition was caused by negligent exposure to asbestos while William was alive, and the case was before Judge Lord Doherty at the Court of Session in Edinburgh for the assessment of damages.

Judge Lord Doherty heard that William´s death was a particularly painful one, and that Elizabeth had quit her job as a social worker in order to provide full-time care for her terminally ill husband.

After hearing expert medical evidence that William would have been expected to live for roughly a further 17 years had he not contracted mesothelioma cancer, the judge granted Elizabeth a total award of 258,520 pounds, and in additional made further awards totalling 52,317 pounds to William´s three daughters and one of 7,084 pounds to his granddaughter.

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6,000 Pounds Compensation for Burns Injury Roofer

September 12, 2011

A retired roofer, who suffered major burns to his arms and face when a hired gas container burst into flames due to a faulty regulator, has agreed to 6,000 pounds burn injury compensation.

Victor Barrell (65) of Northam, North Devon, was fixing the roof of his daughter´s stable in Barnstaple when the accident happened in August 2009. Victor was using a torch when the gas bottle it was attached to ignited into a massive fireball – setting Victor alight and forcing him to jump from the 12 foot high roof.

Fortunately for Victor, his quick-thinking brother-in-law put out the fire with a hosepipe and then filled up buckets of cold water for Victor to place his scalded arms into. Victor was rushed to North Devon District Hospital and from there onto the burns unit at Frenchay Hospital in Bristol where he received months of medical treatment in order to minimise the damage from the fire.

After seeking advice from his solicitors, Victor sued the shop from which he had hired the faulty gas bottle, and two years later has received 6,000 pounds personal injury compensation in an out-of-court settlement.

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Work Ankle Injury Compensation for set at £3.3m

July 18, 2011

A New York City sanitation engineer, who made a claim for work ankle injury compensation for an ankle injury at work when a colleague ran over his leg in a forklift truck, has accepted £3.3m in compensation in an out-of-court settlement.

Andrew Anderson (aged 37) from New York City, was aiding a colleague install a snow plough to the forklift truck when the accident happened in early 2008. His co-worker accidently ran over his ankle, causing a serious ankle fracture which required two surgeries to correct.

Andrew also contracted reflex sympathetic dystrophy during post-operative complications and suffered foot drop – for which he now needs the use of a foot brace. Since the accident, Andrew has not been able to work and been forced to take early retirement from the City of New York.

After consulting his legal advisors, Andrew sued the City of New York for his injuries. Liability was admitted and the case was heard in the New York Supreme Court for final assessment of damages. However, just before the jury were about to start their deliberations, lawyers on the two sides reached an agreed settlement of £3.3m to compensate Andrew for personal injury, lost earnings and loss of consortium.

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Discrimination Work Injurys Claim against Laura Ashley Settled

May 30, 2011

An ex-employee of Laura Ashley has been awarded 9,520 pounds in a discrimination work injurys claim, after a Northern Ireland employment tribunal found the company guilty of indirect discrimination.

The ex-employee – who has not been named – was the primary carer of a child with an attention disorder and had been working at the store for five years. While working at Laura Ashley, she had an arrangement whereby she was allowed time to collect her child from school.

However, when a new work shift system was implemented, this arrangement was cancelled and the ex-employee was told that unless she accepted the new rota system she would be out of a job. The company was able to offer her an alternative position with fewer hours, but this was considered to be unacceptable to the worker.

As a result of the work shift changes, the ex-employee took a total of four months off work suffering from stress and, at the tribunal it was agreed that the company’s new rota disproportionately affected female employees in comparison to male employees.

The tribunal decided to award the ex-employee 6,000 pounds for injury to feelings, 880 pounds for loss of earnings and 2,640 for future losses.

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185,000 Pounds Work Injury Claims Compensation after Fall from Height Accident

May 29, 2011

An unnamed man from Somerset has secured 185,000 pounds in an out-of-court work injury claims compensation settlement after shattering his ankle in a fall from height.

The unnamed man (55) was working on the renovation of the Burnham-On-Sea Asda store when he fell through some plasterboard which had been placed between two industrial fridges.

The man fell more than six feet to the ground and landed badly on his left ankle, causing it to break in five places. He required three operations to put screws into the damaged bones and spent ten months on crutches.

When he was able to return to work, after a recovery which lasted for eighteen months, he found he was unable to perform the tasks he had been able to do previously, and was made redundant in 2009.

After seeking legal counsel, the man sued his employers for causing his injury through negligence, and has agreed a compensation settlement of 185,000 pounds with his ex-employer´s insurers.

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Policeman Awarded 12,000 Pounds Work Injury Claims Compensation

May 7, 2011

A West Midlands policeman, who was injured in the process of apprehending a criminal, has been awarded 12,000 pounds in work injury claims compensation by a Birmingham Employment Tribunal.

Richard Gardner (50) from Birmingham, West Midlands, was struggling to arrest a suspect at the city’s Broad Street Station, when he crashed to the ground – hurting his knee and back. Despite several operations and a long period of time away from the police force, he was unable to continue with his duties on his return, and was laid off.

After seeking legal counsel, Mr Gardner sued the West Midlands Police Force for failing to provide back-up when called for during the arrest and for not making adjustments for his injuries after his return to work.

The police opposed the work injury compensation claim but, at the Birmingham Employment Tribunal, Mr Gardner was awarded 12,000 pounds in personal injury compensation and a further 93 pounds for interest dating back to 2008.

Issues over future loss of salary and lost pension contributions will be decided when the tribunal reconvenes in August.

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Work Facial Injury Compensation of €80k awarded

April 29, 2011

A truck driver, who was hit by a steel wedge, has been awarded 80,000 Euros by the High Court in a facial injury at work compensation claim.

Mr Justice John MacMenamin was told how Keith Dowling (38) of Kildangan, County Kildare, was nearly decapitated as a steel wedge, being used to secure the ballast weight on his trailer, shot from its mounting causing permanent damage to Mr. Dowling’s face.

The wedge, which was 14 inches by 6 inches, was being hammered in place by a co-worker when the accident occured.

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Council Gardener Wins 60,000 Pounds in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Claim

March 16, 2011

A council gardener has been awarded 60,000 pounds in an out-of-court carpal tunnel syndrome settlement, after acquiring carpal tunnel syndrome due to using vibrating tools in the course of his work.

Andrew Bowler (51) from Selston, Nottinghamshire, has worked for the County Council for almost 30 years. During this period of time he has been required to use numerous vibrating tools which have contributed to him developing carpal tunnel syndrome.

Andrew’s doctor diagnosed the condition in 2008, but since then surgical treatment on Andrew’s hands has failed to reverse the condition and Andrew will be disabled for life.

After taking legal advice, Andrew sued Nottinghamshire County Council for not monitoring the use of vibrating tools in the workplace, and has now been awarded 60,000 pounds in compensation.

Andrew continues to work in a part-time capacity for the council, but in a supervisory role where he does not need to use tools.

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370,000 Pounds Compensation for Paralysed Police Officer

March 14, 2011

A police sergeant, who was on motorbike duty when sustaining horrific injuries in a motorbike accident, has been awarded 370.000 pounds in an out-of-court settlement.

Steve Ball (43) from Harrogate, North Yorkshire, was injured in the head-on collision with another motorcyclist in July 2006, and spent 11 days in hospital after the accident.

Paul had to endure four operations in which nerves from his legs were removed and transplanted to his shoulder to try to regain movement to his right side. What movement there is four years after the accident is limited and Paul is still in constant pain.

The other motorcyclist involved in the collision admitted a judgement of error, and payment is to be made by his insurance company.

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Widow Awarded 150,000 Pounds Mesothelioma Compensation Settlement

February 18, 2011

The former employers of the late Mr. Leslie Rayner are to pay 150,000 pounds mesothelioma compensation after he died from the asbestos-related disease of mesothelioma.

The High Court in London have approved a mesothelioma compensation settlement of 150,000 pounds to the widow and son of Mr. Leslie Rayner, who contracted mesothelioma cancer due to exposure to asbestos fibres while working as a foreman electrician for the Pilkington Group PLC between 1953 and 1983.

Mr. Rayner formerly of Doncaster, South Yorkshire, passed away from the disease in June 2008, leaving a widow, Irene, and son Keith. The mesothelioma compensation settlement will be divided between Irene and Mr. Rayner’s estate, as Irene is a classified as a protected person and unable to manage her own affairs.

At the High Court in London, St Helens-based Pilkington Group PLC accepted liability for Mr. Rayner’s death and confirmed their offer to pay 150,000 pounds mesothelioma compensation to the Rayners as well as their costs.

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Factory Worker Awarded 300,000 Pounds for Hand Injury

February 13, 2011

A factory worker from Kendall, Lancashire, whose hand and arm were crushed in a paper manufacturing machine, has agreed a hand accident compensation settlement of 300,000 pounds.

Wayne Miller, 48, was an employee of James Cropper PLC in June 2008, and had been attempting to repair a paper roller at their premises in Burnside, Lancashire, when part of his left sleeve became caught in the machinery dragging his hand and arm between the rollers.

The accident caused Mr. Miller to sustain friction burns which ripped nerves in his wrist, and left him requiring skin grafts and reconstructive surgery. His injuries have left him with no grip in the affected hand and prevent him from doing any other manual employment.

James Cropper PLC admitted liability for Mr. Miller’s injuries but claimed that the accident happened because Mr. Miller had chosen to work alone in contradiction to the company’s health and safety policy, and that he had also removed guarding from his machine in order to attempt the repair.

The hand accident settlement, which was negotiated out of court, was reduced from the amount initially claimed of 375,000 pounds to 300,000 pounds due to this contributory negligence, and James Cropper PLC have now installed safety guards on all their machinery to prevent a re-occurrence.

The Health and Safety Executive have still to give their final assessment on this accident.

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