Any accident at work can be stressful, painful and challenging. No matter what precautions are put in place, accidents at work can and do happen under varying circumstances. Injuries caused by these work accidents can range in severity from minor lacerations and sprains to broken bones, amputations, severe burns and sometimes sadly, even fatalities.
If you are unfortunate enough to have been involved in an accident at work and you’ve suffered a workplace injury as a result, you may be able to claim for compensation.
Here’s our quick guide on what to do if you’ve experienced an accident at work.
The only thing on your mind after an accident should be your own personal safety. Each workplace should have a first aid kit on site and someone designated to administer first aid. If there is an injury, you may not realise how serious it is, so getting assessed by a medical professional is very important. If the injury is serious, you may need to call an ambulance.
You must notify your supervisor or employer about the accident. If it’s severe, your workplace has a legal responsibility to report it to the Health and Safety Executive.
The Accident Book
All businesses should have an accident recording process, and you need to ensure that yours is added into the book (or whatever method is used). If your incident isn’t inputted in the ‘accident book’ make sure there is a paper trail by writing to the employer with details of the incident and ensure you take notes on what has happened, and when.
While you may be in some pain, getting evidence together about the accident is also important. If you can’t do it yourself, ask a colleague to write down the details and take any photos of the accident area and your injuries.
You can never have too much evidence when it comes to workplace accidents and, even if it doesn’t seem entirely relevant at the time, you should note everything that you can down.
Make A Diary Entry Of All Your Symptoms
You must keep an up-to-date list of all your symptoms, whether this is on paper, on a computer or your smartphone. This is because what may seem to be a minor injury immediately following the accident can often turn into a long-term, debilitating condition – perhaps the most significant injury in the claim.
Without sufficient information about your injuries a medical expert writing a report months, or even years later, will find it difficult to attribute the injury to the accident at work.
Personal injury claims can, in some cases, take several years to resolve, particularly when the injuries are complex and long-lasting. Memories naturally fade over time, so a helpful diary of symptoms will assist you in explaining the impact of your accident at work the medical expert.
Visiting Your GP Or Hospital
If the accident led to severe injuries, you should have been taken to the accident and emergency department. If the accident didn’t warrant a trip to the hospital, don’t forget to pay a visit to your GP and explain what happened and what the injury is.
Complaining to Your Employer
If the accident occurred because of a fault or negligence by your employer, you have the right to put in a grievance. It could be that the machinery was faulty or the area you were working in was not protected. Again, this is a way of getting things on record and making sure they are noted down properly. It can also protect you if you are subject to unfair dismissal because of the accident.
If you want more information you can ask for details from your employer through a subject access request.
What Types Of Work Accidents Can I Claim For?
You may have a valid basis for a work accident claim if you are injured at work in any of the below mentioned examples:
- Slip, trip or fall
- Dangerous practices and procedures in the workplace
- Defective or poorly maintained equipment
- Dangerous machinery at work
- Noxious environment or toxic substances
- Falling object
- Non-adherence to Health & Safety regulations
- Negligence of co-workers
- Insufficient or improper training
- Accident while operating a forklift or crane
- Faulty lifting and manual handling practices brought on by lack of training
- Industrial injuries such as hand-arm vibration syndrome or vibration white finger
What Am I Entitled To Claim For?
You can make a claim for a personal injury in the workplace if you have suffered an injury or illness due to your employer not taking the steps necessary to prevent incidents from happening. Your injury does not have to be physical. You could have suffered a psychological injury as a result of workplace bullying, intimidation or stress. In these cases, you will likely be able to bring a civil claim for a breach of contract and even negligence on the part of your employer.
Make A Claim
Contacting Direct Solicitors’ legal advice team can go along way to helping you, not only find out your eligibility, but setting up your claim as well.
No Win No Fee Accident At Work Claims
Most workplace accident claims we handle are on a No Win No Fee basis. That means that there’s nothing to pay upfront and nothing to pay if your claim is unsuccessful.