Work accidents could spell financial disaster for two firms

Industry news roundup: week ended 17 June 2013:

Everyone knows that personal injury at work can lead to serious repercussions, and not just Health and Safety fines – work accident claims can be killer!

In fact, not one but two firms have been in the news lately for some severe workplace accidents, the first being an incident serious enough to lead to the unfortunate death of one worker. West Yorkshire native David Vickers, a 37 year old construction worker employed by Adis Scaffolding, sadly lost his life when he was crushed under an overturned truck, leading to an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive.

According to HSE investigators, the truck overturned because the skip it had been lifting had not been secured properly to it, unbalancing the large vehicle and causing it to upend. Mr Vickers’ employer was found to be in violation of several Health and Safety rules and has been fined an absolute fortune of some £420,000 in combined fines and court costs, but there could very well be even more costs on the horizon for the construction firm in the event that Mr Vickers’ surviving family members decide to sue the bloody trousers off the firm – and if you ask me, it’s more than even money that they will try to squeeze every penny they can from Adis Scaffolding!

Luckily the next incident in the news wasn’t fatal, though this doesn’t minimise the amount of suffering the poor man went through when an accident left him with a damaged eye and broken cheekbone when an air hose whipped his face. The injured man – whose identity has been kept a secret due to legal and privacy reasons – was busily cleaning a paint fume filter for the European branch of multinational firm Faltec when he disengaged the air hose of his sprayer without venting it first, which caused the terribly painful incident.

The HSE investigated this incident as well, discovering that Faltec didn’t give enough instruction to the worker regarding how to operate the sprayer, especially when it came to warnings about disconnecting a pressurised air hose. The employee never received the proper training or information, HSE inspectors determined, and as a result the poor man suffered life-changing injuries; the incident left him with permanent damage to one eye, resulting in visual impairment!

If there’s anything that will be an expensive personal injury compensation claim, it’s going to be that one once the injured worker gets time to find a decent injury lawyer. I don’t envy Faltec Europe at all – they’re going to be taken to the cleaners!

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