Factory Accident Claims
Factories can be very dangerous places. Consequently, health and safety systems must be closely followed and adhered to by employers in order to minimise those dangers. Many dangers can lead to factory accident claims.
The variety of different machinery, the size and mass of the premises and the number of people who often work in factories all increase the possibility of having a factory accident. Factory accidents can often result in life-changing injuries. If you have been involved in a factory accident that was not your fault, you could have a valid workplace compensation claim.
Factory Accident Claims Types
There are certain types of factory accidents that occur more regularly than others, including:
- Manual handling accidents can happen if your employer has not provided manual handling training. In some cases, it may also be necessary to supply specialised lifting equipment in order to help you do your job efficiently and safely
- Machinery accidents can occur if machinery breaks or isn’t maintained properly. All machinery, especially moving machinery, should be guarded so that it is not possible for someone to fall into it and sustain an injury
- Slipping and falling accidents can happen in any environment including in factories. Because a variety of different chemicals and liquids are often used in factories, there can be the risk of these spilling on the floor. There should be a cleaning system in place which should be followed and inspected at regular intervals
- Forklift truck accidents are also common. If you are operating a forklift truck (FLT) you will need to have an FLT licence organised by your employer. If you have not been provided with a licence and have been involved in a forklift truck accident, you might be able to make a personal injury claim. The area where the FLT is being used should also be clearly marked out so that it is apparent where the vehicle is permitted on the premises
- Falling objects can also cause accidents in factories. Often, stock is kept on high shelves. If objects have not been stacked correctly, they could fall on top of someone and cause a serious injury.
As well as injuries caused by accidents, occupational diseases can be acquired in a factory. The type of occupational illness you may contract will depend on the type of chemicals or materials you are working with. Different chemicals and textiles can cause respiratory and skin conditions. For instance, if your work is very repetitive, you may suffer from Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS). There are also many kinds of asbestos-related illnesses, such as mesothelioma and asbestosis, which can occur following exposure to asbestos, The onset of these conditions can often be 30 or 40 years following original exposure.
Factory Accident Injuries
Factory accidents have the potential to cause very serious injuries. There are a large variety of factory injuries, however below are some of the more common kinds:
- Amputations can be caused if you have become entangled or trapped in moving machinery within a factory
- Spinal injuries can happen if you have suffered a fall from height or a slip
- Burns and lacerations can also happen if you come into contact with harmful chemicals and substances
- Back injuries can be sustained in accidents caused by lifting objects
- Industrial deafness can develop following exposure to loud noises in a factory for a long period of time, without the correct ear protection
- Electric shock injuries happen if there has been an electronic item which has not been maintained correctly and has become faulty
Your Employer’s Responsibility To Prevent Factory Accidents
As mentioned earlier, there are many different ways in which your employer help prevent accidents in the factory workplace. Below are some of those responsibilities:
- Employers must supply Personal Protective clothing and equipment (PPE) if their staff work with or alongside potentially dangerous chemicals/substances or materials
- If there are known hazards anywhere in the workplace, your employer should put up signs to warn of these and reduce the likelihood of accidents
- Risk assessments must be performed so that all dangers are considered. New equipment should also undergo risk assessments before being used
- Training – emergency drills and a range of other courses should be undertaken before an employee starts work. The nature of the training will depend on the nature of the job role. Some of this training will need refreshing at different intervals
- Machinery maintenance is an important part of factory safety. Any wear and tear on equipment needs to be inspected – equipment should be repaired or replaced if necessary.
I’ve Had A Factory Accident – What Should I Do Next?
First of all, it is advisable to speak to your GP. Tell them how your accident happened and about the work you do e.g. if it involves working with dangerous substances or if there are repetitive tasks that you perform.
Claiming Compensation For A Factory Accident
You may have reservations about making a personal injury claim against your employer, particularly if you have worked there for a long time and formed good relations. Remember that your employer will have insurance that covers accidents at work. If you are successful in your case, their insurance policy will fund your settlement.
HOW DOES THE CLAIMS PROCESS WORK?
At Jefferies Solicitors, once we have carried out an initial consultation, we will take care of the paperwork required to get your case underway.
A letter will be sent to you following an initial consultation with your solicitor. This will be a summary of the meeting you had and will confirm that they are happy to take on your case. It will highlight who will be your contact and estimate how long the process will take. The letter will also detail how you will be funding the case and an estimate of costs. If you need to provide any further information this will also be included.
A letter will then be sent to the defendant, providing details of the accident. The defendant has a fixed period in which they can reply and in their reply, they must state whether or not they are denying or accepting liability for your injuries. If they do accept liability, your solicitor will endeavour to settle the case out of court.
AMOUNT OF COMPENSATION
All personal injury cases are unique and so the amount of compensation that is awarded in each case is also unique. The amount of compensation that is awarded is determined by looking at two specific factors – general damages and special damages.
The pain and suffering that your injuries have caused is the main factor that is used to determine how much compensation you are owed. This will usually be determined by undergoing a medical examination, from which a report is created that outlines the length of time the injuries will take to heal as well as their severity.
Our compensation calculator gives an indication of how much you might be entitled to based upon your injuries. Jefferies Solicitors will take these different details relating to your injury into account when calculating how much compensation you should be awarded, which will then be put forward to the opposing side and the judge.
However, compensation also takes into account any financial losses that you might have suffered as a result of your injuries, such as a loss of earnings due to being unable to return to work. If you have had to pay for treatment or travel to treatment, compensation may also be able to cover this as well. Therefore, you should keep any receipts or other documents that help to outline the extent of your financial losses, as caused by your accident/injuries.
How Will Jefferies Help Me With My Factory Accident Claim?
Jefferies Solicitors has extensive experience working with many different types of workplace personal injury claims, including factory accident claims.
Time limits do apply for personal injury cases, although there can be exceptions to these rules. In most cases, you will need to begin your claim within three years of the date of your accident.
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