In the UK, 142 workers died at work and an estimated 441,000 suffered non-fatal injuries in 2020/21, according to the HSE’s ‘Statistics on the types of accidents in Great Britain’. Although many of these incidents occur in environments where the employer has done everything possible to safeguard the employee, there are many occasions when this is not the case and where the injured staff member may have reason to carry a personal notice. injury claim.
“We are often approached by people who have been injured on the job and have questions about whether they are eligible to file a claim,” says John McCarthy, personal injury attorney at McCarthy & Co. “What we often find is that employers have tried to cut corners in certain areas, which has had a significant impact on the level of the plaintiff’s injury. We help them build their case and get the compensation they deserve” .
There are many different types of non-fatal injuries that occur in the workplace where an employee may have grounds to file a compensation case. This includes the following.
Slips, trips and falls
These types of occupational accidents are the most reported, according to the HSE. 33% of the estimated 441,000 accidents fall into the category of slips, trips and falls. Offices, factories, construction sites, stores, and almost any other type of work environment are potential spaces where a significant injury can occur from slipping or tripping on a surface or falling from an elevated position onto a hard terrain
Employers in the UK must adhere to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, which requires employers to produce a written policy that explains how they intend to manage health and safety. Employers must also inform employees about the risks to their health arising from work practices and equipment, inform them of what they do to protect themselves from the risks, train and inform about safety in the workplace work and provide protective equipment for hazardous environments.
Employers who fail to comply with health and safety guidelines, resulting in a member of staff suffering an avoidable injury due to a slip, trip or fall, opens up the possibility for the employee to bring a personal injury claim.
Handle, lift or transport heavy objects
This type of occupational accidents represent 18% of the total reported in the United Kingdom. Employers who fail to provide adequate care and training for staff handling heavy objects leave themselves open to costly legal proceedings. Employees involved in these types of accidents can suffer overuse injuries, such as muscle strains and repetitive strain injuries (RSI), which can be the cause of long-term debilitating pain.
When an employee suffers a significant loss of income and quality of life due to these injuries, this can result in large compensation payments that are both financially damaging and reputational for any employer.
Hit by a moving object
In the UK, 10% of all reported workplace accidents were related to the employee being hit by a moving object. Employers must be very careful when assigning employees to any type of environment where objects such as stacked boxes, machinery, tools, vehicles or toxic materials could fall or strike staff members while they are working. Again, failure to take steps to train staff and warn them of the dangers could lead to litigation.
Personal injury cases involving a fall from a height can often result in larger compensation payments due to the impact and severity of the injuries suffered by claimants. Construction companies, for example, must be especially vigilant when it comes to protecting employees who work from heights on ladders, cherry trees, skyscrapers or scaffolding.
In the UK, employers should meet the Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) fall protection requirements. Failure to comply with the guidelines will again open up the possibility of costly legal proceedings.
Fires and explosions
Workplace fires and explosions can lead to massive litigation by multiple employees against their employer, in scenarios where the employer has failed to take the correct precautions related to workplace hazards. Fires and explosions can cause serious injuries such as burns, damage to the respiratory system and disfigurement. These types of workplace injuries are relatively rare, but when they do occur they can cause immense financial and reputational damage to an employer.
Although fatal workplace accidents are relatively rare, particularly in developed countries such as the UK, non-fatal accidents are a common occurrence that can lead to life-changing injuries and loss of quality of life for employees who they suffer Businesses need to be vigilant and ensure they comply with legislation and guidelines relevant to the location of their businesses, to avoid potentially costly litigation and reputational damage.