Industry news roundup: week ended 7 July 2014:
Road traffic accident claims can be some of the most expensive for insurers – as demonstrated by two massive compensation awards in the news this week.
When it comes to the types of injuries you can sustain in car accidents, it’s hard to find more serious and life-changing ones. In fact the only other place I can think that such massively debilitating injuries can occur would be in the construction or manufacturing industries, having seen some truly impressive work accident claims myself; not to denigrate or diminish the pain and suffering of someone caught in such an accident at work, but it does seem more tragic when it involves a moving vehicle for some reason. Perhaps because they’re much more high-profile, especially in cases where drivers or passengers are left wheelchair bound.
That’s exactly what happened to 21 year old Joe Heaton, who was the passenger in a vehicle when it smashed into a tree on the A30 near Bradford Abbas three years ago. The injured man, whose spine suffered enough damage to remove his ability to walk, was just rewarded what the courts are calling a ‘substantial’ personal injury compensation package. Part of the terms of the agreement mean the exact sum will not be publicised, but considering how he will be receiving index-linked payments for the rest of his life in addition to a weighty lump sum the total value is surely in the millions.
The poor man luckily suffered no cranial damage, meaning his ability to think and reason – as well as communicate effectively – is thankfully intact. However, other people injured in car wrecks are not so lucky; in fact, another man who was a passenger in a vehicle that flipped on its roof during a crash might be £2.3 million richer, but his cognitive ability is sadly lessened as a result of the injury. It’s tragic and unfair – even more so when the injuries occur to passengers and not drivers, as there’s no one to point the finger and say that they were partly responsible for the accident – and it’s even more telling when brain injury is involved. A sad day for these poor blokes; no amount of cash, however much, will restore their bodies and minds.