Warehouse accidents – the fallout

When an employee is involved in an accident in a warehouse, there are of course terrible consequences for the victim. However, the consequences for the employer and indeed the entire workforce can also be severe. Thankfully, not all consequences will be negative but it is of crucial importance that warehouse managers take measures to improve health and safety.

Take the example of Employee A, a worker in a stationery supplies warehouse in the South West. Whilst walking down one of the aisles in the warehouse to retrieve some goods, a box of pens fell from the highest shelf striking him on the head and causing him to lose consciousness and hit the ground. Due to the way that the shift rota had been organised, no members of staff with first aid training were on the premises and as a result Employee A simply had to remain where they were until an ambulance could arrive a number of minutes afterwards and transfer him to the hospital.

A full box falling from such a height could have left Employee A with a skull fracture or a broken neck and it could even have killed him. Relatively speaking, he was therefore fortunate to only sustain 2 cracks to vertebrae, heavy bruising and serious neck muscle strains. Even so, these injuries were enough to warrant a 3 day hospital stay.

The consequences for the employer and the business were quickly felt. Employer A is an experienced worker and losing them for the rest of the day, let alone numerous weeks afterwards was disastrous for productivity. Normal work had to be halted in order to go around and check that all shelving was secure and level and that all boxes had been properly stacked. Time also had to be taken to ensure that the records on the electronic stock management system were correct because the sheet being used by the forklift driver suggested that more boxes could be stacked in the overloaded area from which the box fell and injured Employee A. Then there was the fact that nervousness communicated by the rest of the workforce meant that the management had to go out and buy hard hats and arrange first aid courses for more workers before work could continue.

With the warehouse effectively losing a day of work, there were serious financial consequences and the employer had undergo the uncomfortable process of reporting the accident to the Health and Safety Executive in compliance with the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995. Having to report such an accident can do serious damage to the company’s reputation and make insurance premiums more expensive. Furthermore, now that a Employee A has instructed an expert work accident solicitor to help them recover deserved compensation these problems are set to worsen for the employer.

Employee A suffered the worse damage of course. He experienced significant pain which forced him to take weeks off work and cost him financially. Furthermore, he was unable to take care of his family and perform day-to-day tasks. Sadly, the stiffness in his neck will never subside despite the many hours of physiotherapy. The good news is that the compensation that his solicitor helped him win has covered the financial costs.

Been involved in a warehouse accident? We could help

If you have sustained injuries in a warehouse accident which was not your fault, you may be entitled to claim compensation. Our expert work accident solicitors would be happy to help you recover deserved damages, so:

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