If a digger injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward
Digger accidents in construction or excavation work can be traumatic, leading to severe injury claims.
If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by a digger accident, we can help. If your injuries were caused by your employer, a co-worker or contractor, you may be entitled to claim compensation. Compensation can help pay for your rehabilitation, loss of income, and the personal impact of the injury on your life.
We can help you make a digger accident claim on a No Win, No Fee basis.
In this article
You are not alone
Working close to diggers, bulldozers, JCBs and other large machinery comes with inherent risks. Not only is plant machinery extremely heavy and capable of causing serious injury when misused, plant equipment is also often used to move heavy rubble and construction materials.
The fact that diggers and other machinery are inherently dangerous does not let employers off the hook if an accident happens. A legal duty is imposed on employers to protect the safety of their staff, site contractors and of the public. Where this duty has been breached, causing injury, a compensation claim may be possible.
Digger accidents are a common cause of building site injury claims, including cases where the injury results from dangerous work practices or inadequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Building sites are inherently dangerous places to work, and these dangers are reflected in the official building site accident statistics published by the Health and Safety Executive ('HSE'). The figures reveal that 53,000 workers sustained non-fatal injuries at work averaged over the three-year period 2020/21-2022/23. Both the construction and farming sectors account for a disproportionately high number of workers who sustain serious injuries in the course of their work.
Am I eligible for digger injury compensation?
You should be entitled to digger injury compensation if your injury resulted from the negligence or actions of another person or organisation, or from an accident that was not your fault.
Find out online if you can claim with our injury claim calculator. Or you can call 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor. Find out in minutes if you have a claim.
What if I was partially at fault?
Personal injury claims where both the defendant and claimant share some responsibility are relatively common.
In our recent 2023 Work Injury Claimant Survey, 26.02% of injured workers thought they could be partially to blame for their accident.
Even if you think you might be partly liable, you could still be eligible to make a claim. With workplace injuries, it's possible to claim compensation from your employer, regardless of whether your own actions or those of a colleague contributed to your injury.
Digger accidents and PPE
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work (Amendment) Regulations 2022 came into force on 6 April 2022.
This legislation means that employers must provide free Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to all workers, including workers who are self-employed or on a zero-hours contract.
Under the previous 1992 regulations, employers were only required to provide PPE to employees with a formal employment contract.
If you are injured by a digger or other machinery at work or on a building site, and your employer failed to provide you with suitable PPE, you may be entitled to claim compensation - even if you are self-employed.
How much compensation can I claim for a digger accident injury?
The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:
- the seriousness of the digger accident and your injury, and
- any financial losses or costs you have incurred.
At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.
Digger accident injury
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Updated December 2023
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General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).
Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.
Special damages are awarded to compensate you for any costs or losses you've incurred or might incur as a result of your accident. These costs might include lost wages or business losses (if you're self-employed), and any other out of pocket expenses.
Special damages may also be awarded for medical treatments or procedures that you might need to treat your digger injury, including emergency care, diagnostic imaging tests, surgical intervention and physiotherapy.
Digger accident claim case study
The claimant was employed as a labourer on a building site. During the course of his work, the claimant was helping a load a digger with scrap metal. The claimant had not been trained to do this safely, and a digger accident occured, trapping his leg.
The claimant's left leg was fractured. Only the tibia bone was fractured not the fibula. The claimant already had ankle ligament problems and these were made worse by the accident. Following removal of the plaster cast it was clear that the ankle joint ligament laxity would need to be operated on.
When compensation was awarded, the court took into account the claimant's medical history; the pre-existing lateral ligament instability in the left ankle.Defendants will often argue that claimant's compensation should be reduced because they had a pre-existing medical condition. Nevertheless, compensation is usually awarded if the accident has made existing symptoms worse or, as in some cases, has accelerated the time by which the claimant would have suffered symptoms from the original injury.
Negotiations to reach a settlement out of court broke down. The claimant therefore instructed his solicitors to commence court proceedings.
At county court, the claimant was awarded £8,000 for pain suffering and loss of amenity. An additional £2,500 was awarded for future surgery costs.
Who can make a digger accident claim?
Employees of construction companies, contractors, and individuals, can all make a claim against the person or company found to be responsible. This is frequently the worker's employer, who has a duty to ensure the employee's work environment is safe, or the owner or occupier of the site.
The most common digger accidents are crush injuries, including broken bones, head injuries and internal damage.
The general damages portion of your compensation is based on what injuries you have suffered, not where the accident occurred, or who is responsible.
Was my employer negligent?
Every employer has a duty of care to their employees to ensure that they are safe. If they fail to fully ensure the safety of their employees, this may amount to negligence.
If the employer is found to have been negligent, there may be a case for a claim. Examples of negligence that could lead to digger accidents include:
- Failure to fully train digger operatives on safe usage of machinery
- Overloading of diggers
- The operative using the digger in an unsafe way, for example by not following signage on site, or manoeuvring dangerously
- Untrained operatives claiming to have the necessary training
- The JCB in use not having been inspected fully, and failure to spot dangerous faults
How did your injury happen?
The claims process will vary depending on how your digger accident injury happened. Click the icons below to learn more:
How we can help you with your work accident claim
Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, and the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning work accident claims.
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Chris Salmon, Director
About the author
Chris Salmon is a co-founder and Director of Quittance Legal Services. Chris has played key roles in the shaping and scaling of a number of legal services brands and is a regular commentator in the legal press.