The accident dangers faced by machine operators
- AuthorKate Sweeney
Those who work in the industrial sector face dangers every day, none more so than machine operators.
Employers in this sector are required to ensure risk assessments are undertaken on a regular basis, to make sure machinery is regularly tested and that adequate training and supervision is provided in order to avoid accidents occurring amongst their workers. If they fail in this duty and someone is injured as a result, not only will they face prosecution by the Health and Safety Executive, they could be presented with a compensation claim by the injured worker.
Worker suffers severe crush injuries at pharmaceutical packaging company
A Cambridgeshire based pharmaceutical packaging company was recently sentenced after one of their employees suffered severe crush injuries when his arm was dragged into a machine.
John Armstrong needed just under one hundred stitches in his hand, wrist and arm. He had been working on a machine that flattens and folds boxes, but it malfunctioned and as Mr Armstrong attempted to hit the stop button, his arm was pulled into an unguarded area.
The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) said there were not adequate measures in place to prevent employees accessing the dangerous parts of the machinery.
Cardiff steel worker loses fingers in machine accident
Outdated work methods are another cause of workplace accidents involving machinery.
Back in 2009 at a Cardiff steel plant, a production operator trapped his hand in the rollers of a section mill as he was measuring hot steel stock. He suffered serious burns and had to have two of his fingers amputated.
It was uncovered that the Newport employee had been using an obsolete work method. HSE inspector Steve Curry said: “Had Celsa ensured correct and safe working practices, the serious injuries suffered by this employee may have been avoided. This was a completely unnecessary incident. There were alternative measures the company could have used for this task.”
Claiming for industrial accidents
The Cardiff steel worker who suffered burns and the need for amputation of his fingers will no doubt pursue a compensation claim against his employer, unless a settlement has already been reached. There is no real fixed scale for compensation awards for burns, but if permanent disfiguration results, anything between £5,000 and £15,000 is the norm.
Machine related injuries often affect arms and hands and have an impact on the ability to work or carry out everyday tasks. Ongoing issues often arise and pain, stiffness and lack of dexterity can result, at the least. A compensation claim will take all of these factors into account and will seek to cover financial losses plus the cost of treatment, such as physiotherapy.
Stephensons’ industrial accident compensation claims solicitors have extensive experience. If you have suffered an injury at work in a machine related incident, talk to us. We’ll make sure you are adequately compensated for your losses, and suffering. To arrange a free, no obligation initial consultation, call us on 0844 245 6601.
By personal injury solicitor and Stephensons’ Partner, Kate Sweeney