Slips, Trips, Falls And Back Injuries Compensation Cases
25th May 2013
Accident at work compensation claims frequently result from slips, trips and falls. These pose a factor in all workplaces, from the quietest office to the busiest warehouse, and can lead to a huge range of health problems. While back injuries compensation claims, broken bones, sprains and pulled muscles are common, in some cases, slips can cause brain damage or even death.
According to the Health and Safety Executive, more than 10,000 people suffered a serious injury due to a trip or slip at work last year, with this hazard representing more than one-third of all major workplace injuries. While agriculture, catering and construction represent particularly hazardous environments that pose a serious risk of a fall, even a wet floor in an office lobby can cause someone to slip and seriously hurt themselves.
Therefore, the danger of slips, trips and falls should be a serious concern in all business’ risk assessments. Employers should perform these risk assessments regularly, ensure that their management systems are effective, and ensure they are aware of any relevant health and safety regulations and laws.
When do slips, trips and falls lead to back injury claims?
There are a number of particular hazards that can lead people to fall and suffer an accident at work that could result in a back injuries compensation claim. Employers should consider these risks carefully to ensure they are protecting the well being g of their workforce effectively.
Working environments are frequently a factor in these cases – muddy ground, slippery tiles or unclean floors can cause people to slip due to a lack of friction, while trailing wires, cables, obstacles and other forms of poor housekeeping can led to trips. Inadequate lighting can also be a problem, as employees or the public may be unable to see where they can safely walk.
The work employees are conducting might also put them at risk. People carrying heavy loads may be unable to see where they are going, and a slip, trip or fall can be particularly dangerous when it involves heavy items. People tend to have problems focusing on their environment when they are especially busy or are overworked, so employers must be sure to keep workloads at a sensible level.
Furthermore, the people who are in a workplace can also impact slip, trip or fall risk assessments. While staff may have been trained in avoiding workplace accidents, the general public may be able to make a back injuries compensation claim as they have not received this training. Pubs and bars are likely to have intoxicated customers who are more likely to fall over and will have slower reaction times if they do slip or trip, while pregnant women could face particularly severe consequences if they fall over.
What should employers do to prevent trip, slip or fall back injury compensation claims?
Risk assessments are particularly important in preventing accidents at work. The Health and Safety Executive suggests that employers complete five tasks when completing these:
1 – Examine the working environment to look for hazards. These could be uneven floors, slippery areas, areas that are in danger of becoming slippery or cluttered, computer cables or other obstructions.
2 – Consider who is at risk of a personal injury and how this might take place. At-risk parties could be people who visit the workplace as well as any members of staff. Disabled people, the elderly and the infirm are at particular risk and back injuries compensation claims involving these parties could be far more serious.
3 – Think of what the risks could be and whether any precautions are being taken. Are these precautions enough to deal with the hazards? Employers should take all reasonably practicable steps to eliminate danger within their workplaces.
4 – Businesses with five or more members of staff should record the findings of these risk assessments.
5 – These risk assessments must be regularly reviewed. If the business has seen any changes or is encountering any new risks, management arrangements and safety precautions must be enough to deal with these dangers.
If slips, trips and falls frequently occur in the same area, then this indicates that the risk assessments are failing to deal with a hazard effectively. The cause of these falls should be dealt with before anyone claims back injury compensation. Furthermore, risk assessments should take place whenever a serious accident at work happens. Employers must do all they can to ensure their staff are healthy and happy when they leave work and that nobody ever needs to claim back injuries compensation from them.