Osbornes Helps Client Following Amputation at Work

23 Jun 2021 | Maria Tiron
london construction site

Mr C a young Romanian national, came to this country for work in 2015. He soon found work as a cleaner in a hotel and then started working as a construction labourer. He later obtained his Level 2 NVQ and started to work as a shuttering carpenter, a job he was good at and was looking to progress.

On a day in 2018, Mr C was approached by his supervisor and was asked to assist in the installation of a Cantideck which is an extending platform used on building sites to form a temporary ledge projecting from the building, on which materials and equipment may be landed by the crane. Mr C was never trained to undertake such a task.

A crane lifted the Cantideck vertically because it had to fit through a narrow opening at ground level to reach the subterranean levels. The openings in the concrete slabs which formed the site were not designed to accommodate Cantidecks because the contractor had not thought of using Cantidecks until it had already completed the slabs for the subterranean levels.

As the Cantideck was suspended in the void, it became stuck between levels. Mr C together with his supervisor and another colleague attempted to move it by hand and with the pallet truck. The bolt-on the side of the Cantideck came undone and the Cantideck extended rapidly under its weight, trapping Mr C’s right index and middle fingers.

The Defendant denied liability claiming that Mr C was the author of his misfortune. Our investigation showed that lifting a Cantideck vertically without specialist support was contraindicated by the Cantideck manufacturer’s instructions. Moreover, less than 1 hour before our client’s accident, the Defendant lowered the Cantideck into the same vertical position causing the bolt to disengage and the Cantideck rapidly extend. The Defendant then lowered the Cantideck to horizontal, re-engaged the bolt and lifted the Cantideck to vertical again for a second attempt which led to our client’s accident. The Defendant did not inform Mr C that this had happened before calling him over to assist. It was also established that this Cantideck only had one bolt on one side and none on the other.

Our client suffered a serious crush injury to the tips of his dominant right index and middle fingers leading to partial amputations. The amputations weakened his grip strength, therefore, leaving him with a severe and permanent injury.  The injury caused difficulty with fine dextrous tasks and those requiring fine motor control. Despite the severity of his injuries, Mr C returned to work three months later as a traffic marshal. He later found work as a carpenter mate. Mr C had difficulties using tools such as a hammer, screwdriver and a variety of tools such as circular saws and was constantly worried that he might lose his job. He was fortunate to get assistance from his colleagues with tasks that he found difficult. These injuries caused Mr C difficulties doing up buttons, shoelaces, typing, writing and some aspects of eating such as using the knife.

We commissioned a consultant hand surgeon to provide expert evidence on the medical effects of the injuries and a consultant psychologist to consider the psychological effects. It was necessary to obtain expert evidence from a prosthetist who confirmed that Mr C would benefit from custom made high definition silicone cosmeses and mechanical fingers with a cantilever system for functional activities.

The Defendant was invited to change its position on liability and fund the recommended prosthesis. Instead, the Defendant’s insurer sought to settle the case early, by offering Mr C £134, 000.00.

The offer was rejected as being too low and steps were taken to issue proceedings with the High Court.  The Defendant’s insurers put forward an increased offer of £200,000.00 which Mr C accepted.

This accident at work highlights the many risks and hazards on building sites and demonstrates that it is vital in major construction projects that they are designed, planned and risk assessed properly to keep construction workers out of harm’s way. This is what the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015 are there for, aiming to improve health and safety in the industry and allowing the client to gain proper compensation. In a vast industry such as construction, having a relatively larger number of workers might normally be expected to have a greater number of industry-related injuries. However, this does not make accidents acceptable.  In terms of equipment and tools on construction sites, one of the many risks is that of wear and tear rendering them faulty and dangerous but also, as we saw in the case of Mr C, is being deployed or used wrongly. Essentially, it is down to the construction company to take full responsibility for the onsite safety.

Share this article


Contact our Personal Injury Lawyers Today

For a free initial conversation call 020 7485 8811

Email us Send us an email and we’ll get back to you

    • Thank you for the hard work and patience and for being so patient with my constant questions.

      Personal Injury Client

    • "I have found Osbornes to be thorough, clear and understanding from the initial call. They do exactly what they say they will and with passion! I would recommend them to anyone".

      Client Review

    • Very good efficient service. Would not hesitate to use again.

      Personal Injury Client

    • I will use Osbornes for any future needs.

      Personal Injury Client

    • I don't think I could have asked for anything more. One of the best dealings I've had with the legal profession.

      Personal Injury Client

    • Sam was excellent and very professional in dealing with our claim.

      Personal Injury Client

    • My claim was dealt with efficiently and professionally. Communication was excellent, and timely. Shrewd and sound advice was provided at every stage of the claim from beginning through to completion. On the basis of my personal experience I would strongly recommend Osbornes.

      Personal Injury Department Client

    • I just wish to thank you for your hard work and successful outcome. I am pleased with the result and would recommend you and your firm to anyone in the future.

      Personal injury department client

    • Ben Posford ‘knows how to maximise the value of the claim for his clients’.

      Legal 500

    Related InsightsVIEW ALL

    1. green traffic light

      Fatal Accident Case Studies

      Settlement for Pedestrian Killed Crossing the Road Laura Swaine, an Associate at Osbornes Law, acted on behalf of a family...

      Read more
    2. stadium

      Pedestrian receives £1.75 million following amputation

      Kate Milton, acted on behalf of a Romanian National who was hit by a speeding vehicle as she was walking...

      Read more
    3. Ambulance

      Client left with brain injuries after car accident...

      Our Spanish client was the front-seat passenger in a car driven by her husband who was involved in a high-speed...

      Read more
    4. doctor brain mri

      Settlement secured for head injury caused by hammer...

      Osbornes Law has secured a £100,000 settlement for her client who suffered serious head injuries after being attacked in prison by...

      Read more
    5. house builders

      Significant lump sum for below the knee amputation

      Mr N, a Romanian man in his 30s, came to the UK to work with his father-in-law in early 2018. He...

      Read more
    6. man running with prosthetic leg

      Seven figure leg amputation settlement

      Mr S was walking across the yard at work when he was run over by a forklift truck from behind....

      Read more
    7. Ambulance vehicles at the Royal London Hospital

      Examples of Serious Head & Brain Injury Settlements

      C–v-N Child pedestrian crossing road knocked over by car when running into road sustaining a traumatic brain injury and...

      Read more
    8. life changing injuries

      Client pursuing head injury claim after life changing...

      A young woman has told of the moment her head was completely scalped and lost her ear when her hair...

      Read more
    9. hospital

      Limb amputation to pedestrian awarded £1.8million

      Our client suffered life-changing injuries as she was walking home from work. A speeding driver lost control of his vehicle...

      Read more
    10. london construction site

      Osbornes Helps Client Following Amputation at Work

      Mr C a young Romanian national, came to this country for work in 2015. He soon found work as a cleaner...

      Read more
    11. blue lights

      Life changing injuries following motorbike accident

      Our client, who is from Hungary was riding his motorbike in London when a lorry turned across a junction and...

      Read more
    12. Serious Orthopaedic Injury Settlement for £1million

      Our client was a 25-year-old Spanish resident who was travelling in his works’ van when the van was hit by...

      Read more
    13. water ripple

      Fatal accident claim settled for £125,000

      Fatal Accident case following the death of Mr D who drowned as a result of a boat collision in the...

      Read more
    14. white lily

      Young female pedestrian killed in road accident

      Sam Collard, an Associate in the Osbornes serious injury team, recently settled a fatal accident claim brought on behalf of...

      Read more
    15. man in car

      Osbornes Settles Brain Injury Case For Six Figure...

      Osbornes acted for a Hungarian doctor who sustained a serious brain injury in a road accident. She was walking from...

      Read more
    16. building site

      Basement fatality convictions highlight health and safety regulations

      Conrad Sidebottom, 46, and Richard Golding, 43, were jailed for their part in causing the death of Anghel Milosavlevici. Osbornes Law partner...

      Read more
    17. Worker in factory

      Osbornes settles finger amputation claim for record £1 million...

      Osbornes acts for a factory worker who suffered partial finger amputations on his dominant hand when it got caught in...

      Read more
    18. judge's hammer

      Osbornes wins High Court victory for spinal cord...

      Ben Posford at Osbornes Law represented former nursery worker Aileen Cooper who has secured a legal victory in the High...

      Read more
    19. vehicles on motorway

      Brain injury car accident victim receives £5m

      A man in his twenties who sustained serious injuries in a car accident as a teenager has received more than £5...

      Read more
    20. 19.6.2013

      Head & Brain Injury Case Studies

      Man who suffers head injury in car crash receives compensation A man who suffered a serious head injury as a...

      Read more
    21. 19.6.2012

      Student involved in accident receives compensation for serious...

      A student who was knocked down by a car on her way to university has received £147,000 in compensation for the...

      Read more