Bus doors and the driver’s rule book

A bus driver let some passengers on when traffic was stationary. He then closed the doors on one passenger . He alleged the passenger was trying to keep the doors open for friends. The bus continued and the passenger was thrown out and sustained serious injury.

Rule 33 of the Driver’s Rule Book states: “in no circumstances should a bus with passenger doors be moved in service with any door open.” The court held that, despite some dispute about whether the passenger was keeping the doors open or not, the bus driver had moved when the doors were opened and was in breach of the rulebook and negligent.

Vincenzo Bollito (by his wife and Litigation Friend Filomena Esposito) -v- Arriva London EWHC 48 (QB) QBD (Nelson J), 18 January 2008.

Manual handling and care cases

User falls on carer

Our client, a home carer, was kneeling on the floor behind a service user. She was changing her incontinence pads while the service user held on to a sink. The user collapsed and fell on top of her causing injury.

Issues about the user’s lack of mobility and steadiness on her feet and the effect of Alzheimer’s had been reported prior to the accident. There was no risk assessment or instructions on how to deal with this service user.

Breaches of Regulations 3 and 5 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 were pleaded.

The defendants said their care plan was sufficient.

The Judge found there was no evidence that home carers were instructed to read the care plan or that it was made available. In any event, it was inadequate and did not amount to a risk assessment and the claimant was not instructed how to carry out this work safely. Judgment for the claimant.

Newcastle upon Tyne County Court, 14 February 2008.