Dangerous machinery injury claims

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Jonathan Speight

Panel Senior Litigator

A guide to making a No Win No Fee dangerous machinery work accident claim

The Health and Safety Executive reported that 1568 major injuries in 2013/14 involved contact with machinery.

Machinery at work is often inherently dangerous. Even equipment that is relatively safe to use can become dangerous if it is poorly maintained or mishandled. Regardless of the nature or state of the machinery used by staff, employers owe their workers a duty of care to maintain a safe work environment at all times.

Machine-related injuries are often severe and can have a significant impact on a person's life. These injuries can also permanently affect an individual's ability to work.

Quittance's network of solicitors work hard to recover compensation needed by employees injured in work accidents to fund essential treatment, living costs and future care and rehabilitation.

What responsibilities do employers have?

Employers have a strict duty to provide suitable equipment for their employees.

It is an employer's responsibility to ensure that all work machinery is safe to use, well-maintained and that staff are trained in its use.

The Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974 places a duty of care on employers to ensure that:

  • Safety measures are in place and enforced
  • Machines are safe and fit for purpose
  • Machines are used safely and correctly  

These duties include:

  • Performing regular maintenance of machinery
  • Prioritising completion of essential repairs
  • Carrying out risk assessments to ensure machinery is operated safely during work processes
  • Training all staff using the machinery how to operate it safely and correctly
  • Providing suitable protective clothing, and ensuring this is always worn by staff when operating machinery

If an employer fails to implement these safety measures, they are in breach of their duty of care. They could be found to be negligent and liable to pay compensation for injuries caused.

How do I make a dangerous machinery work accident claim?

There are statutory time limitations for filing dangerous machinery claims. In the majority of cases, a claim must be started within three years of an accident.

If you are not sure whether you want to make a claim, a confidential consultation with a personal injury solicitor will give you valuable advice concerned medical treatment and the gathering of evidence.

Gathering evidence to support your claim

You can decide to proceed with your claim at a later date, if you wish, knowing that the evidence that will strengthen your claim is already collected.

One of the most important steps to take is to get a medical report. This will need to come from a qualified medical expert, but cannot be your GP. Your solicitor can advise further on this point.

The medical report will confirm the nature and extent of your injury, and will be one of the pieces of evidence needed to calculate your compensation.

Your solicitor will need to prove your injury was caused by the negligence of your employer. This may require specialist help, such as expert technicians to assess the safety of the machinery.

How much compensation can I claim for a dangerous machinery accident?

The compensation amount directly relates to the severity of the injury. Due to the kinds of injury dangerous machinery can cause, compensation awards can be high.

The Judicial College guidelines are used to calculate both Court awards and negotiated settlements. These guidelines specify the 'general damages'  payable for pain, suffering and loss of amenity sustained following an accident involving dangerous equipment.

For example, the guidelines recommend an award of general damages between £23,430 and £50,050 for serious hand injury.

In addition, compensation is also paid for lost earnings, treatment and care costs and other expenses.

Explaining No Win, No Fee arrangements

A No Win, No Fee compensation claim gets underway once the Claimant agrees, with their solicitor, a "CFA", or Conditional Fee Agreement,.

The agreement sets out the work the lawyer will deliver and the "success fee" that will be taken from the award when your claim is successful.

Selecting a Quittance solicitor, you are able to focus on your recovery, knowing that there will be nothing to pay if your case is unsuccessful.

Get a compensation calculation and claim report

Finding the answers you need to make an informed decision can be difficult. The Compensation Claim Report (CCR) exists to help answer those questions.

Your free, bespoke CCR will consider the main points relevant to your case. The CCR reports on the likely duration of the claim, the chance of winning, and includes a calculation of potential compensation

For more information, get your Compensation Claim Report here.

What to do next

Our expert panel of No Win No Fee personal injury solicitors can advise on the best course of action if you were injured as a result of dangerous machinery at work.

Call Quittance on 0800 612 7456 or complete a quick online form and we will call you back.