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Leg injuries sustained in an accident at work could lead a man to claim compensation for his injuries from his employer' liability insurance company.
The unnamed man suffered damage to his ankles and feet when he was hit by a forklift truck at a warehouse owned by global recycling Novelis UK in Warrington in November 2010.
At the time of this accident, the 43-year-old was carrying a large bale of crushed aluminium cans across the depot floor when the forklift truck accidentally collided with him. The company which is based in Georgia, USA was subsequently found to have flouted regulations.
In fact, during this particular work accident injury case heard at Warrington Magistrates' Court, it emerged that Novelis had ignored prior warnings from the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) about the standards of its safety policies.
Some four months before this accident, the HSE had given the company notice about enhancing the vehicle and pedestrian segregation in its Warrington plant, while members of staff there had also raised concerns about this matter.
The case was told that even though forklift trucks are used on a day-to-day basis at the warehouse there is no system in place to make sure the vehicles are kept separate from areas of the depot where employees walk.
Martin Heywood, inspector at the HSE, explained that Novelis had not conducted a proper assessment of the risks involved in this practice after failing to adhere to the changes proposed by the body.
"It has since made significant improvements and forklifts can now operate safely within the warehouse. However, it's disappointing that it took the injury of a worker for these changes to be made," he added.
Novelis subsequently admitted breaching the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 and received a fine of £6,000, meaning the employee could now opt to pursue a civil damages claim.
Posted by Emily Swanson
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