Vibration white finger claims

In the November Law Bulletin, the VWF case of Montracon -v- Whalley (Court of Appeal) was reported. This was followed in last month’s bulletin by Doherty -v- Transtec from our Belfast office. This followed the approach of Whalley, in essence taking a broad brush to medical evidence in favour of the claimant. The findings in Whalley were almost identical to the Cardiff case of Morgan -v- Corus that appeared in the September bulletin.

A Solicitor at Cardiff has discussed the impact of these decisions with the designated HAVS district judge in Cardiff. He has agreed that a meeting should be held to be chaired by HHJ Hickinbottom, and to be attended by the main claimant and defendant firms, to discuss the impact on case management. He has written to HHJ Hickinbottom asking him to chair such a meeting and is waiting for a response. John will let execs know how it goes as the outcome will undoubtedly be of interest to VWF execs in other offices.


Manual handling and the Court of Appeal

The claimant had a hernia lifting a pallet at work. It was six feet square and was lifted from a stack. There was no evidence as to its weight.

The Court of Appeal ruled that the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 (MHOR) would not have applied to this task because there was no evidence the operation involved a risk of injury. This could be read in conjunction with Hawkes -v- LB Southwark (1998) as to when the risk in handling brings the MHOR into play.

Brazier -v- Dolphin Fairway (2005) EWCA Civ 1469.