A man involved in a workplace crane accident in June 2017 died from his injuries at the beginning of August.
David Webb, 43, was seriously injured when the crane collapsed at a construction site on 21st June.
Two men, David Newall, 36, and Rhys Barker, 18 died at the site from crush injuries.
A witness to the accident said he saw the crane being used to lift tools when it started to tilt and then fall.
The accident highlights the devastating injuries and loss of life heavy vehicles at work can cause.
Those who have been injured in an accident involving heavy machinery at work may be entitled to claim compensation.
The dangers of moving vehicles on a work site
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Fatal injuries arising from accidents at work in Great Britain 2017 report, 31 fatal workplace injuries were caused by being struck by a moving vehicle in 2016/17. This makes it the second most common cause of workplace fatalities.
Being struck by a moving vehicle can occur in any type of workplace; however, this type of accident is most common in the agricultural, construction, forestry, and manufacturing sectors. In fact, being struck by a moving vehicle is the most common cause of fatalities in the agricultural sector (which is also the most dangerous industry in which to work).
An employer’s risk assessment responsibility
Whether it is a moving vehicle such as a forklift or combine harvester or a stationary object such as a crane, an employer has a duty to protect their workers from suffering harm.
The HSE provides clear guidance as to how a risk assessment in relation to danger caused by moving vehicles should be conducted.
- Identify the hazard – monitor the activities of vehicles and pedestrians in the workplace over a reasonable period, including deliveries, collecting waste, and loading materials. List the vehicles on-site and state what they do. Then identify specific hazards which are likely to harm workers and/or visitors.
- Decide who may be harmed and how – evaluate who is likely to be in close proximity vehicles and why.
- Evaluate the risks – this involves assessing the risk posed by each hazard, the chance that somebody will be harmed (high or low), and how seriously they might be harmed (seriously or not). High risks are those that are very likely to cause harm or where the harm is likely to be severe (or both). The HSE explicitly states that transport accidents are usually considered serious.
- Eliminate or mitigate the risks – once the risks have been identified, employers should take steps to eliminate or mitigate them. For example, a speed limit could be implemented within the worksite, staff training increased, or the workplace rearranged so fewer people are near sites where moving vehicles operate.
If your employer fails to take proper precautions to protect employees or visitors to the workplace from being injured by a heavy or moving vehicle, they may be liable for compensation should someone suffer an injury.
Claiming compensation after being hit by a heavy or moving vehicle
Victims of a workplace accident involving a heavy or moving vehicle often require extensive rehabilitation to help manage life-changing injuries. The personal injury claims pre-action protocol is designed to address the needs of the claimant through the provision of medical or rehabilitation treatment as soon as possible.
To successfully claim for compensation, you will need to show that your employer breached their duty of care to keep you safe at work and this breach caused you harm.
It is important to note that most personal injury claims are settled outside of court. Your employer will have insurance to cover any compensation claims from employees, and they will expect a claim for compensation to be made if a staff member is injured whilst performing their duties.
If you have been injured at work by a heavy or moving vehicle, come and talk to us about whether you have a claim for compensation. We deal with all clients in a confidential, sensitive manner and specialise in personal injury claims, so we have an in-depth understanding of this area of law.
At Russell Worth Solicitors we specialise in personal injury claims. If you have suffered an injury because of an accident that was not your fault and would like a free claim assessment, please call us now on 0800 028 2060 or complete our Online Claim Assessment.