Employer liability- accident at work
23 November 2017
Compensation of £10,000 paid to an employee who suffered injuries when she fell at work
The claimant was injured when she fell at work when pushing a cage carrying stock over a yard which had an uneven surface.
The claimant was employed as a warehouse operative in a DIY store and worked in the yard area when taking deliveries. As she was moving a work trolley over the yard she had to push it up and over a raised lip in the yard and in doing so she fell forwards landing on her hands. She felt some pain but was unaware that she had in fact fractured both elbows.
On leaving work she went to hospital where she was x-rayed and advised that the impact of landing on her hands had caused fractures to both elbows. Her right arm was put in a cast and immobilised but her left was not.
The claimant was off work for 11 weeks and was paid in full by her employers and returned to work on light duties on full pay. The claimant subsequently changed her job for reasons unrelated to the accident.
It was alleged that the claimant’s employer had failed to provide her with a safe place of work. The employer’s insurers initially denied liability before accepting partial liability whilst arguing that the claimant was also to blame for the accident for failing to look where she was going. The litigation process commenced and the Defendant maintained their arguments of contributory negligence.
Expert medical opinion was that the claimant had sustained fractures to both elbows described as bilateral symmetrical radial head fractures. The medical expert was of the view that the Claimant had made a good recovery. Although there was some mild intermittent symptoms which would continue permanently they were not preventing her from continuing in her new employment.
The claim was litigated and during the litigation process the employer made an offer of £8000 which was rejected. Further negotiations ensued and a negotiated settlement of £10,000 was agreed before the case went to trial, which reflected full liability on the part of the employer.