Fatal injuries in the workplace still a regular occurrence
- AuthorKate Sweeney
Despite improved health and safety standards in the workplace, fatal injuries still occur on a regular basis in the UK.
Workplace fatalities can occur in just about any environment, but it goes without saying that some industries are generally more dangerous than others. According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), of the 151 deaths in 2009/10, 42 occurred in the construction sector. Building sites contain a number of potential hazards, from working at great heights to driving large vehicles on uneven surfaces.
The services industry had 41 deaths in the same period, followed by agriculture (38) and manufacturing (25). Each sector has its own distinct set of hazards to deal with, ranging from working with large machinery to handling dangerous chemicals. Although the number of fatal injuries is decreasing, there are still instances of companies disregarding their safety responsibilities. When this happens, tragic cases may only be seconds away.
British telecom found negligent after engineer falls from ladder
In 2006, David Askew, an engineer with British Telecom, died after falling from a wooden ladder while installing distribution boards. After an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive, BT was found to be negligent in several areas.
For example, the wooden ladder had not been subject to an annual inspection, in contravention of BT’s own policy. The work had not been properly planned, and Mr Askew had not been given appropriate access equipment. The catalogue of errors led to the tragic death of the employee, and could easily have been avoided. Falls from heights were the most common type of workplace fatalities in Britain in 2008/09.
Seeking compensation for fatal workplace injuries
For the family members of those who have died as a result of an accident in the workplace, seeking justice and mounting a claim against the employer can seem a daunting process, especially if the company is particularly large. However, providing advice is sought from a specialist personal injury lawyer who deals regularly with workplace fatalities and HSE inquests, families can rest assured they will be tenaciously represented.
At Stephensons, we have many years experience with accidents at work, and can provide families of victims with support throughout the claims process. Call our personal injury solicitors in confidence on 01616 966 229.
Be personal injury solicitor, Kate Sweeney