Reduction in employee deaths and major injuries
Specialist industrial injury law firm Thompsons Solicitors has welcomed figures published today by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) showing a reduction in employee deaths and major injuries – but is warning the figures are likely to worsen in future if the Government’s Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill (ERRB) becomes law.
The HSE statistics, released this morning, show serious injuries such as amputations, fractures and burns dropping to 22,433 in the year to March 2012 compared with 24,944 in 2010/11 and fatalities dropping to 173 workers from 175 the previous year and an annual average of 196 for the past five years.
However, the Government introduced legislation in October that will eliminate employer liabilities for safety that have been in place since an 1898 Court of Appeal ruling (Groves v Lord Winbourne).
Much harder for injured workers and bereaved families to secure compensation
Tom Jones of Thompsons says it is crucial the House of Lords amends the ERRB when it debates the proposed legislation in two weeks’ time.
“We are in grave danger of going back to the dark satanic mills of Victorian times,” says Jones. “Britain is one of the safest places to work in Europe but that won’t continue to be the case if employer duties are watered down.
“The proposed legislation would put the onus on the worker to prove the whole case, including that the employer knew or should have known about the hazard that caused the injury. Even judges in the Victorian times recognised that it was very difficult for a worker to prove what the employer knew or should have known.
“The ERRB is the latest in a series of measures to weaken safety rules. The Government has also eased reporting requirements and increased the number of workplaces deemed as ‘low risk’ with lower standards of risk assessment.
“Government legal reforms will make it much harder for injured workers and bereaved families to secure compensation, thereby encouraging employers to cut corners because they will be less concerned about possible claims.”
Looking for legal advice following serious injury? Chat to one of our specialists today.
Thompsons Solicitors will move swiftly to support you or your loved one to build a case for compensation after catastrophic injury. Our priority is to establish the facts and apply for interim payments as quickly as possible to secure vital funds for treatment and rehabilitation. The aim is to get you, or your loved one, on the road to recovery as soon as possible.
Our committed serious injury specialists secure millions of pounds in damages for seriously injured people each year and are supported by Client Support Coordinators and groups such as the Spinal Injuries Association, Headway and the Limbless Association, to signpost clients to sources of further aid.
If you, or someone you care about, has been catastrophically injured in the last three years contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation with a serious injury expert to discuss your serious injury compensation claim.
For further information, visit our How to Make A Compensation Claim page.