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A worker has been horrifically burned and suffered seriously life changing injuries whilst digging a trench at work.
The 41-year-old man struck a 415 volt underground electricity cable whilst working on refurbishment work in a central London pharmacy. He was digging the trench to lay a new sewage pipe but did not know that where he was digging was the site of an incredibly powerful cable.
When his shovel hit the cable he suffered burns across his body and throat. He is now unable to work and has been registered disabled.
The Health and Safety Executive investigated the accident at work and discovered that not enough preparation was done prior to the work starting. Medpharma Ltd has been fined £60,000 and ordered to pay £40,000 in costs after being found guilty of breaching the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007.
The contractor should have been given plans from utility companies or any other organisation that had relevant information about the site. The site should have been surveyed and underground cables identified prior to work being started.
Medpharma should have carried out investigations into the utilities under the property, including taking steps to detect and identify the underground services. They could have easily done this by using identification holes to verify location, depth and identity. It would also be a level of common sense to realise that if the building has electricity that there would be cables present.
All employers have a duty of care to keep their staff safe at work. You have the right to question if what you are doing is safe. In this case the worker should have been told that there were cables present, but he could have asked this himself and requested detailed plans to ensure he didn’t hit any.
If you are injured at work, through no fault of your own, you have the right to claim compensation from your employer’s insurance company. All employers have to have insurance, so any accident claims are paid out from the insurance company rather than the business. If you do make a claim for a workplace accident your employer can’t fire you or discriminate against you in any way.
The personal injury lawyers at Claims Direct can help you if you have been injured at work on a No Win No Fee basis.
For a free consultation call Claims Direct on freephone 0800 884 0321 or start your claim online and we will call you.
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