Crush Injury Claims
Crush injuries occur whenever the body or part of the body is jammed, pinched or squashed by or between objects, such as when a person is trapped under a rolling vehicle. Often, there is little visible evidence on the outside of the body, but the hidden damage can be extensive. The pressure can damage bones, muscles and internal organs, depending on the degree of force. Sometimes, the crush injury is so severe that amputation is required which can have life- changing consequences.
In the UK, most crush injury claims arise after an accident at work, with workers in the construction, manufacturing and agricultural sectors being most at risk of injury. The most commonly injured body parts are the hands and fingers.
If you have sustained a crush injury due to the negligent actions of another person, we can help. Our expert panel of crush injury lawyers can offer timely and compassionate legal assistance and help you recover the financial compensation you deserve.
Common causes of crush injury claims
Crush injuries can occur in any situation, but most commonly happen in the workplace. The following describes some of the leading causes of crush injuries.
Dangerous machinery crush injury claims
Machinery at work causes over 1,500 serious injuries a year, according to the Health and Safety Executive. Crush injuries typically occur when a worker becomes entangled with a machine while they are operating it or trying to remove blockages. Most machinery-related crush injuries affect the hands and fingers and can permanently affect the injured person’s ability to work.
Employers have a duty to ensure that machinery is working properly, and to train staff how to operate it safely. In addition, The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998 require employers to fix suitable guards and establish “danger zones” around machinery so that no worker comes into contact with a dangerous moving part.
If the employer does not take reasonable steps to protect you, then they may have to pay compensation for your injuries.
Falling objects crush injury claims
Crush injuries can occur when a heavy load collapses trapping someone beneath, for example, materials falling from a warehouse shelf or collapsed structures on a building site. The object does not have to fall very far to cause serious injury.
Employers are responsible for keeping the work environment as safe as possible and must supply Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to protect workers from this type of injury. If an employer fails to supply hard hats, steel toe-capped boots and so on, then they may be liable for any injuries you sustain as a result.
Work vehicle crush injury claims
Diggers, cranes, fork lift trucks and certain types of farm vehicles are dangerous pieces of equipment that can cause serious crush injuries if they are not maintained or operated correctly. The vehicle could pin someone up against an object, run over and crush their feet, or roll over on top of a person. They can also collide with other objects such as storage racks causing those objects to topple and crush people.
Employers are responsible for designing safe working processes so that cranes, forklifts and other vehicles can move safely around the workplace. Employees should also be trained on how to use these vehicles safely. If you have been injured in a workplace vehicle accident, you may be entitled to make a crush injury compensation claim.
Road traffic accident crush injury claims
Crush injuries can occur when the roof of a vehicle collapses in a rollover accident, or when the body of a vehicle is so badly compressed that it traps the driver or passengers inside. Crush injuries can also affects cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians who become trapped between vehicles or between a vehicle and another object such as a wall.
All road users have a duty to act responsibly and to take reasonable care for the safety of other road users. If a driver acts recklessly, then they may be found to be negligent and liable to pay compensation to anyone who was hurt by their actions. The claim would usually be settled by the driver’s insurance company, not the driver directly.
Finger entrapment crush injury claims
Doors are responsible for a considerable number of crush injuries to the hands and fingers. The best way to avoid injury is to keep your wits about you; however, there are certain steps that a building owner should take to stop their visitors trapping their fingers in doors.
Children are especially susceptible to door trapping injuries since they may not be aware of the risks. A soft closure system – which stops the door from closing quickly – can help prevent injuries in schools, nurseries and other public places. At the hinge side, the use of a finger protection device that minimises the gap between the door and the frame can eliminate the finger trap.
The law requires that employers, local authorities and building owners identify hazards and protect people as far as reasonably practicable. Those that fail to do so may expose themselves to a compensation claim.
Crowd control crush injury claims
Crowds are a condition of modern life. Most of us encounter them at concerts, football matches, parades and shopping sales every year. Large numbers of people do not pose a threat when they are properly managed and controlled. But if something restricts the flow of pedestrians, for example, a blocked exit, then the crowd can exert a suffocating pressure known as crowd crush.
The organisers of large public events have a duty to protect their visitors from any risks to their personal safety, including potential crush injuries. If you have been injured in a crowd crush because the organiser did not implement the appropriate crowd management techniques, then you may be entitled to claim compensation.
Making a successful crush injury compensation claim
To make a successful claim, your solicitor must be able to prove that the accident was caused by the fault of another person (negligence), and that your injuries were sustained as a direct result of the accident (causation). The negligent person could be an employer, a car driver, the local authority or someone else, depending on the type of accident.
The success of your claim hinges on the strength of the evidence. Your solicitor will gather and examine evidence such as witness testimony, CCTV footage, photographs, machinery specifications and repair logs to support your claim.
What compensation can you seek for crush injury claims?
In crush injury claims, the injured person gets compensation for their injuries in the form of “damages” from the liable party. Damages are intended to return you to the position you were in prior to the accident, and are divided into two main categories.
General damages cover the pain and suffering associated with your injury. This includes pain and discomfort experienced at the time of the accident and any future suffering caused by the injury and its treatment. Damages for pain and suffering depends on the extent and duration of the crush injury – the more pain in the present and future, the higher the compensation.
You cannot work out the value of general damages simply by adding up bills and receipts, and determining the amount is subjective and open to interpretation. People experience crush injuries in different ways, and the Courts recognise this fact. Compensation will be calculated on the basis of your individual experience, such as the loss of your ability to enjoy hobbies and other recreational pursuits, and the emotional distress caused by the accident.
General damages can come either in the form of a Court judgement or, more usually, agreed in an out-of-court settlement between the parties. To come up with a fair settlement, solicitors, insurance companies and the Courts refer to document known as the Judicial College Guidelines. The Guidelines recommend an upper and lower limit for various types of crush injuries, by reference to the level of compensation awarded in similar cases.
Expenses that are directly related to the accident and the injury are known as special damages. They include such items as medical treatment costs, lost income, travel costs, property damage and the cost of medical aids. You can also claim for adaptations that you need to make to your home such as installing wheelchair ramps or shower rails.
In more serious crush injury claims, you may have a claim for future, as well as past, loss of income. This will be the case where you are unable to return to work as a result of your injuries, or are unable to work the same number of hours or at the same salary level. In this scenario, an employment consultant may be asked to write an expert report to determine precisely what work you are able to do in the future.
Special damages can be calculated with reasonable specificity but they must be documented or they cannot be included in your claim. It is therefore important that you gather all your medical bills from treatment providers, wage slips, and receipts for purchases, replacements and repairs.
Our crush injury accident specialists will be able to give you a rough idea of the value of your claim when you first contact us with details of your accident. That estimate will be revised as the medical evidence is collated and we get a better understanding of your injuries.
Who pays the compensation for crush injury claims?
The insurer of the person liable for the injury usually settles the claim. For example, the employer’s insurer will pay the compensation if the crush injury was sustained in a work accident. A driver’s insurer will pay the compensation if the injury was sustained on the road.
Sometimes, we may not be able to trace the at-fault person. This might happen if a negligent driver flees the scene of the accident without leaving their details, or if a former employer goes bust.
In most cases, it will still be possible to make a compensation claim. Various statutory bodies have been established to compensation the innocent victims of accidents where the at-fault person cannot be sued. This includes the Motor Insurer’s Bureau (for the victims of uninsured or untraced drivers) and the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (for the victims of crime.) Where an employer has gone bust, their insurer is still obliged to settle the compensation claim in some circumstances.
If you are not sure who the at-fault person is, please contact us and let us carry out some investigations for you. We will be able to tell you very quickly whether a claim can be made.
How long do you have to make crush injury claims?
As with all personal injury claims, you have three years from the date of the crush injury to make a compensation claim. Claims can sometimes be made outside the three-year deadline but the Courts will only allow this in exceptional circumstances. If you are close to the deadline, please contact us to find out whether you can make a claim.
Family members can contact us for advice if their loved one has been seriously injured and they are unable to start the claim on their own.
Claims brought on behalf of minors can be made at any time before the child’s 18th birthday. The child then has a further three years to make their own legal claim i.e. until they are 21.
If you or a loved one has suffered crush injuries in the workplace, on the road, or in a public place, we can help. Our No Win, No Fee funding arrangement means that you do not pay a penny if you lose your case, so you don’t have to worry about the financial burden of making a claim at this difficult time.
To get started, simply call us on for a free, no obligation consultation. Our expert crush injury claims solicitors will quickly figure out whether you have a claim
and answer any questions you might have about the legal process.
Need some help?
Am I eligible?
If you have been harmed physically in the last 3 years, due to someone else’s negligence, the short answer is yes.
Exceptions to this are for instance industrial disease or if you were a child at the time of the accident you may have a longer period to claim.
How much could I claim?
As every injury is different, the amount of compensation paid out can differ case to case. Varying factors lead to the final figure include: extent of your injuries, earnings missed out on, future losses and more.
Our dedicated team of experts will give you an indication of how much you could potentially claim for.
How does the process work?
We understand that when making a claim it’s important to know what to expect and when to expect it. That’s why we make the process as transparent & clear as possible.
Your solicitor will gather all the evidence and will notify the negligent party that you wish to begin claim proceedings. With your solicitor negotiating on your behalf, you will be keep up to date every step of the way.
Why should you use us?
No Win No Fee
We assess all claims on a No Win No Fee basis, then we can determine how successful a claim is likely to be. This service is 100% free.
We assess each claim on its merits with the information provide, which aids us determine its likely success rate.
Our dedicated panel are experts in securing compensation no matter the injury.
Our personal injury lawyers are committed to securing the best possible outcome for you while providing expert support every step of the way.
Personal Dedicated Solicitors
Each client is provided with their own Personal Injury lawyer who will work on the case from start to finish, being there every step of the way. The client will be provided with a direct phone number and direct email address of the lawyer.
Expert Crush injury claims solicitors working for you
We specialise in helping victims of injury claim the compensation they deserve.
We work on a No Win No Fee basis, meaning if we don’t win your case you don’t pay! Once you make contact, our experienced team will work to recover the maximum compensation you are entitled to.