The claimant was a meter reader. He went to an old people’s home owned and occupied by Derbyshire County Council. To access the meter, he had to go through a fire exit door that led out onto a tiled corridor that in turn led to the meter outside. It was a windy and wet day. He slipped on leaves in the corridor and fell.
The claim was brought under the Occupiers Liability Act 1957 and the Workplace Regulations 1992. The defendant said the corridor had very little traffic and the Workplace Regulations did not apply.
The Judge found that, as the outside area was surrounded by trees, it was foreseeable to the defendant that the narrow corridor would have leaves blown into it. As leaves could be blown into the corridor within a short space of time between cleaning routines, he ruled that, at the very least, the defendant could have warned the claimant verbally of a possible danger or checked the area before he went through the door to make sure that it was clear. Their failure to do so was a breach of the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957.
He also ruled the Workplace Regulations applied to a working visitor to the premises (Reg 2 Workplace Regs) and these were breached for the same reasons as above. Judgment for the claimant and no contributory negligence
Bond -v- Derbyshire CC. 7 November 2006, Derby CC.