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Wayne Hill, a 42 year old maintenance engineer, was repairing a pneumatic metal press when it unexpectedly started working, crushing his head. Trapped for around ten minutes before colleagues freed him, his nose and jaw were broken, his upper lip ripped off and he had bit through his tongue. Despite extensive reconstructive surgery he has been left with reduced sensation in his upper lip and nose, pain in his teeth and a scarred shoulder. He also received counselling for nightmares and flashbacks before returning to work after nearly five months.
HSE Investigation: "Entirely preventable accident"
After investigating the incident, which happened at a West Midlands site on 18 August 2011, the Health and Safety Executive found the machine had a faulty guard. The press, which formed a sheet of metal into a wheelbarrow body, should not have been able to operate if the door was open.
Apparently designed and built by the company 25 years ago, there were no technical drawings for the machine which broke down regularly, so maintenance staff were left to fix it without instructions. The employer was fined after pleading guilty to breaching workplace regulations. Speaking after the criminal hearing HSE inspector said,
"Mr Hill was extremely lucky not to have lost his life in this entirely preventable incident.”
Head Injury UK: Head Injury Claim Experts
At Head Injury UK we understand the importance of employers being required to provide safe equipment to look after their staff. We therefore do not see why the Government is changing the law to stop people like Wayne, from pursuing an injury claim based on their employer's failure to comply with health and safety legislation. If you or someone you know has suffered a head injury or other serious injury in an accident at work, then contact Andy Shaw now to see how we can help you.
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