The man, whose name has not been released to the press due to concerns regarding his privacy, had been employed by Van Elle Ltd, a Nottinghamshire-based engineering contractor, when his vehicle’s boom struck the bridge and sent him careering through the open front screen of the vehicle and right over the steering wheel, according to his personal injury claims. The man’s head then struck the front excavator blade of the vehicle, sustaining injuries so severe that he spent two weeks in a coma and then an additional five months’ worth of rehabilitation.
The injured man has ultimately returned to work. However, as he still has reduced function in his left leg and arm, he is still receiving physiotherapy.
Shortly after the incident, the Government’s Health and Safety Executive investigated the man’s injuries, discovering that not only had the employee not been given adequate training on how to use the excavator safely, but he had also not been wearing his seat belt prior to the accident. It was additionally made known that the injured worker had only been behind the wheel as the regular driver was not available, leading him to stand in for him.
Pinxton, Nottinghamshire firm Van Elle Ltd, was prosecuted by the HSE at Mansfield Magistrates’ Court, which led to a fine of £12,750 and a total of £29,660 in court costs for the company after it admitted to breaching health and safety regulations related to the use of work equipment.