£6,000 for claimant injured due to unsuitable gloves

The female claimant was awarded £6,000 for pain, suffering and loss of amenity as a result of her employer providing her with gloves that were unsuitable.

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Case details

Accident circumstances

The claimant was aged 34 at the date of the trial. She had been employed as a domestic assistant in a hospital owned by the defendant. Her role meant that she would often have contact with certain detergents. These detergents were subject to the Control of Substances, Hazardous to Health Regulations 1988.

The defendant had provided the claimant with "marigold" domestic gloves as well as an apron and a long sleeved overall for protection. The gloves were short and loose fitting which meant the detergents would sometimes run down into the gloves meaning her hands came into direct contact with the detergents.

After using the detergents for around two weeks the claimant's hands, wrists and forearms began to itch. She continued to suffer with these symptoms before visiting her GP some five months later. Her GP advised that she was suffering with irritant dermatitis.

As a result of her condition the claimant was not able to return to the same employment. Instead she sought employment in a nursing home but she still needed to continue to wear rubber gloves at work as well as when carrying out domestic chores around the house. By doing so she was able to monitor the condition and help reduce the chances of any further outbreaks.

It was advised by experts that she was likely to suffer with the condition for the foreseeable future and that she would always need to be conscious of protecting her hands. She would need to apply creams to her hands regularly to help ease the symptoms.

Conclusion and Settlement

Despite meaningful negotiations the parties were unable to reach an agreement in respect of damages outside of Court.

The matter therefore proceeded to trial where the Judge awarded damages of £6,000 in respect of pain, suffering and loss of amenity.

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Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

Author:
Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher