The construction industry is one of the most dangerous in which to earn a living.
A construction worker who was seriously injured in a fall from height at work has secured a compensation package worth millions of pounds.
The 38-year-old man was working for Laing O’Rourke Construction Ltd. at a hospital in Newcastle. A scaffolding platform was unsecured and he fell 80 feet, shattering his legs and suffering life-changing head injuries. It is thought that the fact that he was working at a hospital may have saved his life as doctors were on hand to treat him immediately.
A claim was brought against the man’s employer and a settlement agreed with the company’s insurers. This comprised a one-off payment of £2 million and index-linked annual payments calculated to take into account the increasing cost of his care provision. These will begin at £65,000 per year when he reaches age 45, increasing to £105,000 at age 55 and £150,000 a year by retirement age.
The settlement has been officially approved by the High Court. The Court heard that the man’s medical treatment is ongoing and it is likely that he will at some point need to have one or both legs amputated below the knee.
The Health and Safety Executive has useful guidance on the laws pertaining to the erection and use of scaffolding, including a scaffold checklist. This is intended to clarify when scaffold design is required and what level of training and competence those erecting, dismantling, altering, inspecting and supervising scaffolding operations are expected to have obtained.