Faulty machinery to blame for airport cleaner’s injuries
Workers in Essex may remember that in early July 2013, a gentleman employed as a cleaner at Stansted airport was driving a scrubbing machine back to storage and was unable to stop on a ramp because of a brake malfunction. The driver, 30-year-old man, stuck out his leg in an attempt to slow the scrubber, but the machine rolled over, trapping his left leg underneath. He sustained multiple injuries, including severe sprains to his knees and ankles.
After the incident, reports suggest that the man was unable to walk for a period lasting 12 weeks, and he was able to return to work about 16 months after the accident. However, at the time or reporting, he still found it difficult to move, kneel or cross his legs for long periods.
During legal proceedings, it was discovered that both the motor and emergency brake were in a poor condition, meaning that it was not able to decelerate or brake properly. However, the machine had been serviced the previous day. The failure to address the issues apparently implicated the cleaning and maintenance companies involved, ISS Facility Services Ltd and Lamick Floor Machines. Both the companies pleaded guilty to charges stemming from the incident. They were fined a total of £40,000 and were required to pay an additional £11,200 in costs.
Experiencing a preventable injury at work can be difficult, but there are legal procedures to follow, which can help a person seek compensation for damages. Health and safety regulations exist to protect workers, and failure to comply leaves companies in a vulnerable position when unnecessary accidents occur. If a violation of such regulations occurred, it may be possible for the victim to file a court action that might provide compensation to the injured party.
Source: Herts and Essex Observer, “Companies must pay £51,200 after brake failure leaves Stansted Airport worker with serious leg injuries,” Feb. 10, 2015