Glass presents an ever-present threat in the construction injury. From broken glass left lying carelessly around on building sites, to badly stacked window panes, unmarked glass or loose glass panels, the risk of serious injury is real.
Therese Classon, a Partner in the Personal Injury department at WBW Solicitors in Newton Abbot, outlines the common consequences of a glass injury in the workplace and explains how you might go about claiming compensation if the accident was not your fault.
Types of glass injury
Some glass is specially designed to shatter into harmless fragments when broken; however, not all types of glass have such safety features and although a glass injury can sometimes be adequately treated with a plaster or a stitch or two, others can have long-lasting serious effects. Glass injuries can involve:
- deep level lacerations or puncture wounds;
- tissue and nerve damage;
- damage to connective tissue or muscles;
- severed limbs;
- infections which stem from your original glass injury; and
- permanent scarring.
All employers have a legal duty under health and safety laws to take all steps which are reasonably possible to ensure your health, safety and wellbeing at work.
This entails making sure you are properly trained and given the right equipment to carry out your job. All the machinery you have to use must be regularly checked to ensure it is in good working order and employers should carry out regular risk assessments and put measures in place to ensure workers are as safe as possible.
If your employer fails in this legal duty and you are injured as a result you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation.
Even if you are partially to blame for the incident, you may still be able to make a claim. The level of compensation you receive, however, may be reduced depending on how much the court feels you were responsible for your injuries.
How a solicitor can help
You should contact a specialist personal injury lawyer as soon as possible after your glass injury while events are still fresh in the minds of those involved and evidence is easier to ascertain.
Your solicitor will assess if you have a valid claim and if you do, they will help you gather the evidence you need to prove your case, such as witness statements, medical reports and CCTV footage. They may also refer you to a medical expert to establish the cause and extent of your injuries and the effect they have had on your life.
Your lawyer will then negotiate hard to get you the out-of-court settlement you deserve or fight your corner at court if the claim is contested and it is appropriate to issue court proceedings.
The compensation you receive will depend on the extent of your injuries and your possible recovery time but could include general damages for the pain and suffering you experienced (physical and mental) , as well as special damages which cover out-of-pocket expenses stemming from your glass injury such as medical expenses, travel costs, loss of earnings, care costs and any cash needed to make necessary adaptations to your home.
For further information, please contact Therese Classon in the Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence team on 01626 202328 or email email@example.com. WBW Solicitors has offices Newton Abbot, Exeter, Torquay, Paignton, Bovey Tracey, Launceston, Honiton, Exmouth and Sidmouth.
This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. Please note that the law may have changed since this article was published.