Most Common Accidents at Work: Agriculture

The agriculture industry is one of the biggest for accidents at work. Agriculture accidents are, according to the Health and Safety Executive, the biggest cause of musculoskeletal disorders in the UK, with 2,030 in every 100,000 workers.

Figures such as this show that the agricultural industry can be a dangerous industry to work in. however, many of these accidents can be avoided by regular risk assessments and adequate training and safety measures. If your employer does not do these things then you may be able to make a claim.

Causes of Agriculture Accidents

The main causes of agriculture accidents include being struck by a moving vehicle or object, falling from height, being injured by an animal, slips and trips, accidents involving machinery and getting trapped in something collapsing or overturning.

Exposure to Asbestos over a long period of time is something that farm workers can be injured by. This long-term exposure to Asbestos can cause serious conditions, such as Asbestosis, Asbestos related cancers, and pleural thickening. Other industrial illness claims that farm workers may develop include noise-related hearing loss, respiratory diseases, certain types of cancer, and even vibration white finger.

It is your employer’s responsibility to ensure that you do not have accidents at work that can cause injury.

Your Employer’s Responsibility

Your employer is responsible for keeping you safe at work. On a farm, this is even more important, as there are a lot of things that can cause an injury. Your employer must make sure that the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (1999) are met, and they do so by conducting risk assessments to ensure that everyone is kept safe. Employers must make sure that they do everything possible to avoid staff having accidents whilst at work.

If you have an accident at work and have to take time off, you should get agricultural sick pay. This means that you should be paid at least the agricultural minimum wage whilst you are off. This is, however, likely to be less than your usual wage. This will be taken into consideration when you are making a claim.

If you are self-employed, you may still be able to make a claim. Farm workers are often self- employed on a contractor basis. This means that there is still a company that they are working for. If the company fails in their duty to keep you safe, then they may be responsible for your accident.

How We Can Help

Here at The Compensation Experts, we work with solicitors who deal with personal injury claims daily. This includes accidents at work, and agriculture accidents. Call us today on 0800 182 2187 to speak to our friendly helpful advisors or fill in the contact form on our website and we will call you back.

Cycling Road Traffic Accidents Consultation

Cycling Road Traffic Accidents are amongst some of the most common types of RTA. Cyclists are amongst some of the most vulnerable types of road user. Cycling road traffic accidents also commonly cause injuries that can take a while to heal.

There is currently a consultation going on in the Government as to whether to change the rules in the highway code to reflect these different types of road user. This consultation focuses on improving the safety for vulnerable road users; in particular, cyclists, pedestrians, and horse riders.

The main proposals of the consultation are:

  • To introduce a hierarchy of road users which ensures those road users who can do the greatest harm have the greatest responsibility to reduce the danger or threat they may pose to others.
  • Clarifying existing rules on pedestrian priority on pavements, to advise that drivers should give way to pedestrians crossing or those waiting to cross the road.
  • Providing guidance on cyclist priority at junctions to advise drivers to give priority at junctions when travelling straight ahead.
  • Establishing guidance on safe passing distances and speeds when overtaking cyclists and horse riders.

The consultation finished on the 27th October 2020, with the results expected soon after.

Cycling Road Traffic Accidents

Cyclists are amongst the most vulnerable road users. Many of the road traffic accidents that happen every year in the UK involve cyclists. If you have been injured in an accident on the road as a cyclist then you may be able to claim compensation.

There are various reasons that cyclists can have an accident. The main causes of accidents on the road are: careless driving, speeding, and drivers not paying attention. They can often cause injury, and these injuries can take a while to heal.

Accidents involving uninsured drivers

Sometimes, in road traffic accidents, there are uninsured or untraceable drivers. In cases such as these, you may be able to claim from the Motor Insurers Bureau. The MIB specialise in cases of uninsured drivers, and is a body that is paid into by motor insurance companies throughout the UK. In cases that involve the MIB, they would pay the compensation.

Accidents involving a child

If your child had an accident whilst cycling, then you may be able to make a claim on their behalf. With accidents involving a child, the usual three-year time limit does not come into effect until they turn 18. So, in theory, you may have a longer time in which to make a claim. however, it is always better to start a potential claim as soon as possible.

How we can help

Here at The Compensation Experts, we work with solicitors who specialise in road traffic accidents. This includes cycling accidents. This means that they are extremely well placed to help you make a possible claim if you were involved in a road traffic accident as a cyclist. Contact us today by filling in our contact form, or call us on 01614138765 to speak to one of our friendly knowledgeable advisors.

Accidents at Work Compensation Examples: Construction

Accidents at work compensation examples in construction are a fairly common occurrence in the UK. In truth, a large portion of all compensation claims stem originally from the construction sector. In fact, construction has the highest rate of accidents in comparison to any other industry. The majority of workers that suffer injuries at work are unaware that they could be eligible to claim compensation for the complications and harm they endure due to the accident.

Accidents at Work Compensation Examples for Construction #1

It’s 2016, and a man suffers an injury due to the direct negligence of his employers. Subsequently, he suffers significant injuries to his back, head and neck after falling headfirst onto a wooden platform from a height of 2.5 metres.

The accident happens as a result of the absence of any safety measures in place according to an investigation from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). In turn, the company responsible receives a £6000 fine as punishment.

Falls from heights such as this are responsible for over 30% of all construction accidents and injuries. More critically, they usually cause the most serious of injuries and threats as evident in the accident from 2016.

Common examples of construction accidents

The accidents that occur in construction vary from injury to injury. The most common ones are:

  • Falls from heights such as from ladders or scaffolding.
  • Certain objects falling from a height which cause injuries such as bricks, tools and equipment.
  • Overdemanding or inadequately training workers resulting in improper lifting, carrying or pushing awkward loads.
  • Faulty equipment also accounts for a portion of the accidents and injuries. Occasionally, workers suffer injury from moving vehicles, such as forklifts.
  • Finally, welding and chemical burns alongside electric shock accidents are a fairly common occurrence within construction.

It is important for all of these scenarios to know what your options are for compensation. Here at The Compensation Experts, we can guide you through all your options and offer free and friendly advice for what your next steps could be.

Construction accident claims can prove to be rather complex. This is due to the fact that there’s usually an attachment of several parties to the accident. Ergo, that makes it more difficult to pin blame on someone. In some instances, it may not even be clear who was in the wrong when it comes to the cause of an accident. For these reasons, a thorough investigation is usually necessary to get to the bottom of the case. This would not affect you specifically but more so the duration of the compensation claim.

Ultimately, it’s down to your solicitor to get to the bottom of who’s fault the case was.

Details that Enhance Your Case for Accidents at Work Compensation Examples in Construction

You’ll want to improve your chances of making a successful claim for Work Compensation Examples in Construction. Therefore, it’s important to know the following details alongside the date and time of the accident.

  • Address of the site;
  • Contact details of any witnesses who were present at the scene;
  • Person to which you report the accident;
  • Details of any medical treatment you received, including who provided the treatment and when;
  • Photographs of the scene of the accident;
  • A copy of the logbook recording the accident, or details of who records the information in the logbook.

Remember: the more accurate your description is, the better chances of success your claim will have. This owes to the clear-cut scenario and foundation put in place regarding construction accidents and how compensation works.

Time Limits for Claiming

When it comes to making the claim itself, there is a strict three-year time limit in place for claiming. The accident must occur within the past three years when claiming; otherwise, you won’t be eligible to make a claim.

So, were you hurt in a construction accident? The Compensation Experts can help you get the compensation you deserve. We have access to some of the best solicitors who specialise in construction accident claims. Moreover, they offer a large amount of experience with these types of cases and have supported people to secure the compensation that they deserve.

After you contact us and one of our friendly compensation experts speaks to you about your case, if we feel that your case is promising and you are eligible for compensation, we will send it to one of our solicitors who will get started on your case on a No Win, No Fee basis. This means that if your claim loses, you’ve no financial obligation and won’t have to pay a thing. Discuss it further with us when you get in touch for a preliminary chat.

For further information, and to find out whether you are eligible to make a claim, call us today. You can also browse our website or fill in one of our contact forms and one of our friendly compensation experts will contact you to discuss any queries and concerns you may be having.

Stormy conditions no excuse for unsafe pavements and roads

If you’ve gone to work, taken the kids to school or frankly done anything that’s required leaving the house in the last few days, then you will no doubt have experienced the effects of Storm Ciara.

With Storm Dennis now forecast to be hitting British shores by the weekend, we are likely to continue experiencing disruption to public transport, sporting fixtures and our daily lives for the foreseeable future too.

This bout of bad weather has meant that, in recent days, it has been hazardous to walk down the street – even in areas that haven’t experienced flooding thankfully, there has still been large volumes of ground water, as well as black ice in some parts, on pavements and roads.

Add to this the high winds, fallen trees and blizzard conditions that we’ve had, and it would be fair to say that it has also been treacherous to drive on UK roads the past few days, thereby increasing the likelihood of accidents happening.

It is the responsibility of your local council to ensure that the highways and byways around you – this includes both the roads and pavements – are cleared and gritted in icy and windy conditions and so, safe to travel on. Similarly, it is the duty of Highways England to make sure that the nation’s motorways are safe for motorists to use, while it is the responsibility of Transport Scotland north of the border.

If this is not done, and you are involved in a road traffic accident (RTA), or suffer a slip, trip or fall while walking down the street, you may be entitled to compensation.

At The Compensation Experts, we work with specialist law firms who have a track record of making successful compensation claims against local councils and after RTAs have occurred. We and the legal firms we work with have a lot of experience with these types of cases and so, are well-placed to help you get you the maximum amount of compensation.

If you have been involved in a road traffic accident or have sustained any type of injury while out in public the last few days, the stormy conditions we have been experiencing are not an excuse. Therefore, you may be entitled to compensation.

Do not hesitate to contact The Compensation Experts via the contact form on our website or by calling 0161 413 8765.

UK Statute of Limitations for Personal Injuries

The UK Statute of Limitations for personal injuries is a time limit placed on personal injury compensation claims in the UK. It was introduced as part of the Limitation Act in 1980 and serves two purposes — to ensure that the evidence gathered in personal injury cases is as recent as possible and to protect defendants against a persistent fear of litigation.

The time limit on compensation claims in the UK is generally set at three years however there are exceptions to the rule. Although this page aims to provide you with as much information as possible on the time limit for claims in the UK, it should not be used as a substitute for legal advice — if you have questions regarding the impact the Statute of Limitations may have on your claim for compensation, speak with a personal injury claims solicitor at the first possible opportunity.

When Does the UK Statute of Limitations for Personal Injuries Take Effect?

The UK Statute of Limitations for personal injuries begins from the date on which you first become aware of your injury or illness. In most instances this means the date on which your injury was first suffered — however as the symptoms of some conditions can take years to manifest themselves, it can vary. It is important to note that seeking medical attention as soon as you discover your injury or illness is vital — not just to safeguard your health, but also to ensure that your claim for compensation is unimpeded by accusations that you contributed to your own condition by failing to have it treated in time.

Exceptions to the Time Limit in Compensation Claims

Conflicts with other legislation or instances in which a claimant is unable to support their claim for compensation are the situations in which exceptions to the UK Statute of Limitations for Personal Injuries most often occur. Here are a few examples of instances in which the time limit on personal injury claims may be altered:-

The Athens and Montreal Conventions

The Athens Convention (1974) and the Montreal Convention (1974) dictate the amount of time a person injured on an aeroplane or at sea has to pursue personal injury claims. These conventions apply in the UK and in other countries in which they have been ratified — they reduce the amount of time a claimant has to pursue compensation to two years.

The UK Statute of Limitations for Personal Injuries and Conflicts with the Consumer Protection Act

The time limit for claims in the UK can be altered when a conflict with the Consumer Protection Act arises. If you were to injure yourself due to a fault in a product you have purchased, you are allowed to pursue a claim for compensation for up to three years, once the product has been available in the UK for less than ten years. The longer the product has been in circulation, the less time personal injury claims have to be pursued. If you were to sustain an injury because of a product nine years after it was released onto the market, you would only have one year in which to claim public liability compensation for example.

The Time Limit on Compensation Claims and Personal Injury Claims for Children

It is not legal for persons under the age of 18 to pursue a claim for compensation or instruct a solicitor, and therefore the three-year time limit on compensation claims in the UK cannot be applied. However, a parent or guardian may initiate a claim on behalf of the child before they reach adulthood, or alternatively they can wait until the child is old enough to pursue a claim on their own, at which time the time limit takes effect.

The Mental Health Act and a Catastrophic Brain Injury

Under the Mental Health Act (1983) a claimant must possess the cognitive ability to be able to pursue a claim for compensation. If an accident victim is left comatose by an accident, the time limit imposed by the UK Statute of Limitations for personal injuries is paused until the person regains the mental capacity to be able to pursue a claim. If a person never regains cognitive ability, a claim can be made on their behalf by a ‘Litigation Friend’.

Extensions to the Time Limit on Personal Injury Claims

Persons pursuing personal injury claims may, in certain special circumstances, be granted extensions. These extensions to the UK Statute of Limitations for personal injuries may only be granted by a court. There is also the concept of a “Standstill Agreement” which effectively stops the clock on claims. The measure must be agreed upon by all parties beforehand, however.

Summary — The Statute of Limitations in the UK

Considering the implications the UK Statute of Limitations for personal injuries may have on your claim for compensation may allow you to prevent it from being time-barred. Although two or three years may seem like ample time in which to pursue personal injury claims, preparing a compensation claim can take a long time, so starting as soon as possible is important. Also, when the long term consequences of a serious injury have been taken into consideration, three years may be entirely inadequate.

As mentioned above, several instances exist in which time limit for claims in the UK can be reduced or extended — for this reason it is imperative that you speak with a personal injury claims solicitor about the time limit on compensation claims in the UK and the impact it may have on your claim.

The rise of occupational stress. What your employer needs to do to reduce a “public health emergency”

In her final annual report before she left the role last year, England’s then-Chief Medical Officer, Professor Dame Sally Davies, declared mental health issues to be a public health emergency.

While such an announcement could be seen as being overly-dramatic, it is supported by evidence.

The impact of occupational stress

For example, according to the latest figures released by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), stress, depression or anxiety accounted for 12.8 million working days lost due to work-related ill health in 2018/19. On average, each person suffering from stress, depression and anxiety (what we will call ‘occupational stress’) took around 21.2 days off work. This accounted for 44% of all work-related ill health and 54% of working days lost in 2018/19. In total, 23.5 million working days were lost in 2018/19 due to all types of work-related ill-health.

We have been unable to find a reliable estimate on what this cost the UK economy, but it would be fair to assume that it is in the billions of pounds.

Occupational stress issues can be particularly prevalent in certain roles too. For example, BBC Radio Tees revealed last week that Cleveland Police officers are spending more time on long term sick leave with mental health issues than for any other reason. A Freedom of Information (FOI) request showed that the force had 132 officers absent last year because of mental health, compared to 62 for all other sicknesses.

This trend is reflected across all of the emergency services, as another BBC report, last year showed that sick leave for emergency services personnel due to mental health issues rose by a third between 2014 and 2018. It is understandable that emergency services personnel would have high rates of occupational stress given they deal with traumatic situations on a daily basis. However, the HSE statistics also show that those working in other sectors, such as the Civil Service and education sectors, also have high instances of sick leave due to mental health issues.

Furthermore, when analysing the 2018/19 figures, the HSE concluded that;

Work-related stress, depression or anxiety continues to represent a significant ill health condition in the workforce of Great Britain … The reasons cited as causes of work-related stress are also consistent over time with the workload, lack of managerial support and organisational change as the primary causative factors.

Clearly then, a range of factors that are consistent across different industries is causing this rise in occupational stress.

What employers need to do

Therefore, it is for employers to find ways to alleviate the stresses being placed on workers. While it is reasonable to expect employees to work hard and give their best, it is unreasonable to expect workers to sacrifice their health, either physical or mental, for a paycheque. In particular, achieving a good work-life balance has actually been found to improve productivity.

This has been seen recently in the calls to create a four-day week. For example, in November 2018, Perpetual Guardian, a New Zealand financial services company, switched its 240 staff from a five-day to a four-day week and maintained their pay. A study of the trial found that productivity increased in the four days they worked so there was no drop in the total amount of work done. Similarly, Microsoft’s Japan office moved to a four-day week for the month of August last year and found that the shortened weeks led to more efficient meetings, happier workers and boosted productivity by 40%.

While it may not be feasible for all employers to adopt a four-day working week, flexible working practices could arguably also help to alleviate work-related mental ill-health by allowing employees to more easily fit their work around other aspects of their lives, such as the need to take children to and from school, medical appointments and the like. Workers should also be aware that, after you have worked for your employer for 26 weeks, you are legally entitled to request flexible working too. It is for your employer to then decide whether they say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ and give you reasons for this decision.

Furthermore, in addition to mentioning workload, lack of support from managers and organisational change as factors causing workers mental ill health, the HSE report also highlights “tight deadlines” and “too much responsibility”. It is entirely understandable that an employee’s mental health could be adversely affected if they are set unrealistic targets, such as tight deadlines, or are feeling overwhelmed by too much responsibility given to them by management who are then unsupportive.

Ultimately, the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 requires employers to protect the health, safety and welfare of staff from anything that may cause them harm. This includes an employee’s mental health too.

If it is found that an employer has failed to take all reasonable measures to fulfil this duty of care to his/her staff, the employee affected can claim against their employer for the damage caused to them. This, among other things, can include for loss of earnings while the employee was away from work due to mental ill-health caused by the job they were in.

How we can help you

At The Compensation Experts, we work with specialist legal firms who have a proven track record in making successful compensation claims against employers whose workplaces have caused its staff to suffer from mental ill-health. We and the legal firms we work with have a lot of experience in these cases and so, are well-placed to help you get the maximum amount of compensation you are entitled to. After your initial consultation with our advisors about your particular circumstances, which is done on a free no-obligation basis, we will match you with the firm who best suits the circumstances of your case.

If you have had to take sick leave from work due to mental health issues and feel this was because of the working environment, you may be entitled to compensation. To find out if you may have a claim, do not hesitate to get in touch with The Compensation Experts via the contact form on our website or by calling 0161 413 8765.