If a PPE injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward

When injuries occur due to a lack of suitable protective equipment, an employer's liability compensation claim may be possible for the their failure to provide safe working conditions.

If your life, or the life of a loved one, has been affected by an injury we can help. If your injuries were caused by your employer or a co-worker, you may be entitled to claim compensation for your medical treatment, any resulting disabilities, loss of earnings and any other expenses.

You can make a No Win, No Fee work accident compensation claim with the help and support of a personal injury solicitor.

What is Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) refers to safety helmets or other protective headgear, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear, safety harnesses, respirators or other types of protective masks, or other garments or equipment designed to protect the wearer's body from injury or infection.

The hazards addressed by protective equipment include physical, electrical, heat, chemicals, biohazards, and airborne particulate matter. PPE is vital in various industries and workplaces to minimise exposure to hazards.

The Personal protective equipment (PPE) at work regulations from 6 April 2022 define PPE as:

"…all equipment (including clothing affording protection against the weather) which is intended to be worn or held by a person at work and which protects him against one or more risks to his health or safety, and any addition or accessory designed to meet that objective."

You're not alone - Over 500,000 people are hurt at work a year

Despite extensive legislation relating to the provision of adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), injuries sustained due to a lack of PPE are all too common, posing serious risks to workers across various industries.

561,000 workers sustained a non-fatal injury according in 2022/23, many of these due to a lack of suitable PPE and related health and safety failings (hse.gov.uk).

From building sites to factories, the absence of proper suitable protective gear like helmets, gloves, or safety glasses can lead to severe accidents and long-term health issues.

Do I qualify for inadequate protective equipment injury compensation?

If you've been injured or made ill in the last three years and it wasn't your fault, then you will be entitled to claim compensation for inadequate protective equipment.

Use our injury claim calculator to find out if you can claim. Alternatively, you can speak to a claims advisor on 0800 376 1001 and find out if you have a claim in minutes.

Is a claim still possible if I am partly liable?

Ascertaining who is liable for an accident is not always straightforward and can often involve blame on both sides.

In our 2024 Work Injury Claimant Survey, 26.02% of injured workers said they either were unsure of which party was responsible, or believed they were partially responsible for their injuries.

If you believe you were partly responsible, you may still have a claim. If you were injured at work, you should be able to claim compensation from your employer even if your actions, or the actions of a colleague, contributed to your injury.

Read more:

Can I claim if I feel I was partly responsible for my accident?

How long after an inadequate protective equipment injury do I have to start a claim?

For most injury claims, you have up to 3 years from the date of your injury to start the claims process.

If you were injured due to someone else's negligence but didn't realise it at the time, the clock starts ticking from the 'date of knowledge' - the day you become aware of your injury.

How much compensation can I claim for an inadequate protective equipment injury?

The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:

  • the seriousness of 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.

Inadequate protective equipment injury compensation calculator

Get an accurate compensation estimate (including for multiple injuries), confirm your legal position, and check if you have a No Win, No Fee claim.

Updated May 2024 Compensation Calculator v3.04

General damages

General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).

Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College (judiciary.uk) and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.

How is compensation calculated if I have multiple injuries?

Special damages

Special damages is compensation for quantifiable financial losses you've incurred as a result of your injury. Compensation can include loss of income, including future loss of income, and any additional expenses directly related to your injury.

These damages will also cover any medical or treatment bills, such as wound care, diagnostic imaging tests and surgical intervention.

Read more:

A complete list of recoverable losses in a personal injury claim

Psychological harm and accidents in the workplace

If you have suffered psychological harm as a result of an accident at work, you are not alone.

Our 2024 Work Injury Claimant Survey reveals the extent of psychological trauma, with 25.00% of claims involving a psychological injury, 64.09% of which related to a physical injury.

Injuries due to inadequate PPE can cause anxiety and stress, impacting trust in employer's commitment to safety.

The psychological effects of a work injury can have a devastating impact on your physical recovery and return to work. Some injured workers may be reluctant to seek help for psychological harm, fearing stigma or a disregard of their trauma.

Factoring compensation for psychological harm will ensure you receive mental health support and other therapies that may not be readily available on the NHS in your area.

Our compensation calculator can estimate your compensation for psychological injuries. Or you can call us on 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor.

What does the law say about PPE?

Employers have a duty of care to safeguard workers, shielding them from potential risks in the work environment.

Part of this legal obligation involves providing suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), free of charge. PPE must be fit for purpose and offer adequate protection.

On 6 April 2022, the Personal Protective Equipment at Work (Amendment) Regulations 2022 (PPER) came into force as an and amendment to the 1992 Regulations (PPER 1992).

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) are responsible for enforcing this legislation.

This revised legislation means that employers now have an obligation to provide free PPE to all workers, including workers who are self-employed or on a zero-hours contract. Previously employers were only required to provide PPE to employees with a formal employment contract.

What are the responsibilities of an employer?

According to PPER, the employer must view PPE as a last resort measure. Before PPE is used, employers must first endeavour to:

  • Eliminate the risk
  • Replace the hazard
  • Isolate workers from the hazard
  • Change working practices to minimise risk

If PPE is still required after taking the above measures, employers must ensure that the PPE is:

  • Provided free of charge
  • Suitable for its intended use e.g. appropriate for the risks involved; takes account of the ergonomic requirements and personal needs of user; is properly fitted; meets design standards.
  • Compatible where more than one item needs to be used together
  • Properly stored and maintained to avoid damage or defects. Defects should be reported.
  • Used correctly, giving employees training and instruction where necessary

If you are injured at work following a breach of any of these points, you may be entitled to claim compensation.

What is 'inadequate PPE'?

Where an employer provides PPE, but fails to meet any of the further requirements set out in the regulations, PPE would be deemed inadequate.

Inadequate PPE might have been supplied following a failure to carry out a detailed risk assessment. It may be that unsuitable PPE was supplied in ignorance or in an attempt to save money

Whatever the reason, inadequate PPE subjects workers to unnecessary risk.

If your were injured as a result of your PPE being inadequate, your employer may be considered negligent and a compensation claim should be possible.

PPE accident statistics

According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), there are approximately 9,000 work accidents reported every year, where there had been failures in the specification, use and maintenance of PPE.

The statistics show that hand, arm and foot protection are the most common types of injury, followed by eye and face protection.

Major injuries are most common in construction and agricultural. Injuries tend to be less severe in the manufacturing and service industry.

Experienced work accident solicitors

Accidents at work need to be handled sensitively and carefully. For this reason, seeking expert legal advice is recommended.

Together with our panel of solicitors, we have helped numerous employees successfully claim compensation for PPE related injuries, including:

  • Foot fractures caused by inappropriate footwear
  • Burns sustained as a result of gloves that are too short or thin
  • Eye damage as a result of ill-fitting safety goggles
  • Head injury due to an insufficient hard helmet

Further reading:

What are your employer’s legal obligations for eye safety? (wellbeingnews.co.uk)

What happened?

The claims process will vary depending on how your inadequate protective equipment happened. Click the icons below to learn more:

No win, no fee inadequate protective equipment injury compensation claims

With no win, no fee, you can claim inadequate protective equipment injury compensation without financial risk. If your claim isn't successful, you pay nothing. If you win, you only pay a pre-agreed percentage of your compensation.

Find out more about how no win, no fee claims work

Get expert advice now

Interested in talking to a work accident specialist about your claim?

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Citations

Chris Salmon, Director

Author:
Chris Salmon, Director