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Accident at Work: Focusing on Construction Accidents and the Legal Procedures Involved in Filing Compensation Claims

Accidents often occur in the UK construction sites, causing great sufferings to the victimized workers. Yes, the repercussions of construction accidents are mostly dangerous, and the UK law system grants the accident at work victims the right to claim compensation for the injuries suffered by them at work. Filing an accident at work claim is not an easy matter. The victim can get the services of a solicitor in filing the case in the court.  True that the compensation received from the employer cannot make the suffering worker forget his pain caused by the injury, but he use the compensation money for accident at work claimhis treatment and rehabilitation.

A Brief Study of the Common Construction Accidents

Let us discuss about some of the common work accidents suffered by the construction workers:

  • Scaffolding Accidents: A survey was done to discover that about 2.3 million construction workers in the UK make use of scaffolds to reach the hard-to-reach parts of the high rise apartments. However, scaffolds can prove to be a means of danger if they are not made and used in the proper manner. Scaffolding accidents are common in the UK and mostly of the scaffolding mishaps occur due to faulty and collapsing scaffolds. As per the Health and Safety Executive Statistics, approximately about 50 workers die in scaffolding accidents every year, while more than 4,500 people are injured due to defective and improperly used scaffolds. Insecure bracing and lack of attention also often contribute to the scaffolding accidents at work. The government of the United Kingdom is urging the owners of the construction companies to take necessary steps and offer proper training to the workers to that they can use the scaffolds in the desired manner and stay away from the accidents caused by the scaffolds. The UK government has introduced Work at Height Regulations to prevent the workers from working at height. These regulations are derivatives of The European Work at Height Directive that intends to the work at height laws all throughout Europe.
  • Forklift Accidents: The forklift accidents are no less common than the scaffolding accidents affecting the construction industry. Every year, about 10 workers die, while thousands of workers suffer from life-changing injuries due to forklift accidents in the UK. Most of these accidents at work could have been prevented if the construction companies were prompt enough to carry out at thorough risk assessment.  The Fork Lift Truck Association, while assessing the dangers of operating the forklift accidents, claimed that the most prominent danger posed by the industrial good transporting machines is when these machines are used in the location where workers are walking around. In a crowded working environment, the forklift driver can lose his control and run over a worker.

The HSE (Health and Safety Executive) has discovered the prime reasons behind the forklift accidents at work. According to HSE, poor supervision, improper use of the forklift trucks and lack of training are the chief factors causing the forklift accidents. Other reasons behind these construction industry mishaps include uneven floor, unhealthy work environment and obstacles. In order to prevent the occurrence of these accidents, the employers need to protect maintain the vehicles properly and identify the risks involved in using these vehicles. Proper risk assessments programs, if introduced, can definitely help in reducing forklift accidents at workplaces.

If you are the victim of a forklift accident due to your employer’s negligence, you can file an accident at work claim to receive a good amount of compensation. In case of a fatal accident, the family members of the deceased work accidentcan file the compensation claim case.

  • Electrical Accidents At Work: The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) stated that every year, about 1000 electrical accidents occur in the construction industry of the UK. Out of the 1000 instances, about 30 incidents involve fatalities. Injuries can be the result of improperly-maintained electrical devices and faulty work power lines, mishandling of electrical equipments in explosive areas. Death cases are often the results of the victims accidentally coming into contact with the electric cables. The Electricity at Work Regulations (1989) states that proper measures need to be adopted to prevent the electrical accidents causing personal injuries, and in certain instances, death.  The employers need to be careful enough to create a safe working site and provide the workers with protective apparels while handling electrical equipments. The workers need to be offer necessary training on how to handle the electrical devices expertly and appropriately. The employers need to make sure that electrical equipments that are being handled by the workers are safe for handling.

If a worker undergoes electrical accident due to the employer’s failure to provide a safe and healthy work environment, the affected worker has the right to file an electrical accident compensation claim.

  • Construction debris Accident: The owners of the construction companies need to ensure that the debris created at the construction site is not scattered here and there. Removing the waste materials from the construction is a necessary health and safety practice that should not be ignored. The debris produced in the construction sites is very hazardous, often causing accidents. The construction manager needs to eliminate the unsafe conditions to bring the rate of construction debris accidents.

Is it Really important To Avail a Solicitor’s Service to File Accident at work Claims?

The process of filing compensation claims is highly complex and it is not desirable to pursue a compensation claim without the help of a professional solicitor. The workers planning to file an accident work claim need to consult an expert lawyer to know the legal proceedings involved in a work accident case.  A solicitor knows the exact process of how to file a compensation claim in the court of law. Thus, it is important to avail the services of a personal injury solicitor who is specialized in dealing with the work accident cases.

How to Select the Best Personal Injury Solicitor to File a Work Accident case?

Do a thorough online research to shortlist some of the most reputed law firms in the United Kingdom. Go through the official websites of these firms to get an idea of the services provided by them. Check if the firms have good personal injury solicitors specialized in the work accident domain. Going through the sites will provide you with a fair idea of how popular the firm is. You will also be able to understand the benefits of availing the services of the firms. Compare the services offered by your shortlisted law firms and finalize one as your service-provider. After finalizing a law firm, go through the profiles of the personal injury solicitors employed by your chosen firm. Choose a solicitor who has ample experience in dealing with accident at work cases. Try to get information on the performance records of the solicitors and choose a professional who has the best success rate.

How Does a Personal Injury Solicitor Deal with A Work Accident Case?

As you visit a solicitor with your case, he will listen to the whole story of your accident and will try to assess if you have any fault in causing the mishap. If he finds that you are totally innocent and the accident has taken place due your employer’s failure to provide a safe and secure work environment, he will mostly likely take the case. He will ask you to provide him with the medical prescription where there is a detailed description of the injury caused by the accident. He will also gather other information including the opinions of the people who witnessed the accident. He will also talk to your employer and will attempt to settle the case out of the court. In case your employer denies his guilt and do not agree to go for an out-of-the court settlement, your lawyer will start legal proceedings to present the case in the court.

In the court, the solicitor will represent you and will provide strong arguments in favor of your case. He will place logical statements and substantiate them with proper documents. The judge in charge of the case will go through all the documents and will minutely listen to the arguments placed by your lawyer and the lawyer representing your employer, and will reach a conclusion to offer the final verdict.

accidents at workWhat if You Win The Case?

If you have appointed a no win no fee solicitor to look after your case, you will not have to pay him his fees even if you win the compensation. He will receive his service fees from the opposing party of its insurance company.

How Much Amount of Compensation Can You Expect? 

The amount of compensation cannot be determined before the case is won. It usually varies from case to case. The cases involving highly serious injury are most likely to win higher compensation than the cases involving minor injuries. The work accident compensation usually covers the hospital bills, other medical expenses and loss of earning suffered due to the mishap. The victim has use

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  3. Learn How to Cope with Accidents at Work Taking the Legal Route
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  5. Tips for Employers to Avoid Accidents at Work and Resultant Legal Complications

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