Accidents With Machinery At Work
More than 175,000 people are injured at work each year, with many of the most serious incidents a result of accidents involving machinery.
If you are unfortunate enough to be hurt while using machinery or while in an area where machinery with moving parts was being used, you may be entitled to claim compensation from your employer for your injuries.
Liddy’s is one of the leading firms of personal injury solicitors in Yorkshire and has extensive experience of handling claims resulting from accidents at work, so is ideally placed to advise you on your case.
Types of injury caused by accidents involving machinery at work
The potential to suffer an injury exists in any workplace where the correct safety procedures have not been followed, but the extent of those injuries is likely to be much more serious in environments where machinery is used on a day-to-day basis, such as factories, farms, construction sites, recycling centres and garages.
In some cases, workers have been killed while starting, stopping, operating, repairing or cleaning machinery. Thankfully, the number of fatal incidents has fallen in recent years, but life-changing injuries remain depressingly frequent.
Among the most common problems are crush injuries and serious lacerations resulting from body parts being caught and trapped in machinery. These often require reconstructive surgery or skin grafts and sometimes result in amputation.
Such incidents usually involve machine operators, service engineers or factory cleaners and result in damage to the hands or fingers, although it is not unknown for workers to lose an arm or leg in this type of accident.
Eye injuries are also common in industries where high-speed machinery is used, as a result of debris being thrown out of the equipment. This can lead to permanent damage to an eye, impaired vision and even complete loss of sight.
If you or a member of your family has suffered an injury of this sort as a result of an accident at work, you should contact a solicitor for advice about personal injury compensation claims.
Can I claim compensation for injuries suffered in an accident at work?
Employers have a legal duty to provide a safe working environment and if you are injured in an accident because your employer failed to do so, you will have a strong case to claim compensation for your injuries, ongoing care, any long-term pain or stress related to the incident, and loss of earnings.
There is extensive legislation dealing with the safety procedures that should be implemented in environments where machinery is used and employers must comply with the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998, the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, along with any industry-specific Approved Codes of Practice (ACoPs).
Put simply, employers have a responsibility to ensure all machinery is properly maintained, has the correct guards in place and that risk assessments covering the use, maintenance and cleaning of the machines have been carried out.
They must also make sure everyone who operates machinery or works in an environment where machinery is present is given the right training and provided with the relevant workwear and personal protection equipment.
The biggest causes of accidents at work involving machinery include guards not being replaced properly after cleaning, operators making mistakes due to not having received appropriate training, and clothing or jewellery becoming caught on moving parts. All these incidents are avoidable, as long as the correct safety procedures are in place.
The law relating to workplace safety and accidents is complex, but Liddy’s Solicitors’ specialist personal injury team has significant experience of dealing with this type of claim and can guide you through every step of the process.
How to make an accident at work compensation claim
The first step towards making a claim after suffering an injury as a result of an accident at work involving machinery is to consult an experienced personal injury solicitor.
They will advise you whether you have a strong case and what steps you need to take to seek compensation for your injuries. Most claims are eventually settled out of court and a good solicitor will also handle all the negotiations to ensure you receive the right level of compensation.
One thing to be aware of is that there is a deadline of three years to begin legal proceedings or the case will be considered time-barred. The three-year period begins either on the date of the accident itself or the date on which you discovered your injuries are related to the accident.
Liddy’s Solicitors is one of Yorkshire’s leading personal injury specialists and has a track record of successfully handling claims relating to accidents at work.
For advice about your claim, complete the ‘How Can We Help You?’ form on the left of the page, call us at our Wakefield office on 01924 780753 or contact our Barnsley office on 01226 731314.