An employee of the global infrastructure group, Balfour Beatty, has received compensation after being injured on a poorly maintained and unlit flight of stairs.

Stewart Martin, 39, from Gillingham in Kent was working a night shift in May 2012, when he slipped and fractured his left index finger while carrying a metal plate up a set of stairs.

The pedestrian handrail for the stairs was loose, large pieces of cement on the stairs were missing and Stewart was unable to see the unlevel surface because there was no lighting to guide pedestrians up the walkway during the night.

The accident led to four operations to correct the damage and he had to have almost four months off work. He is yet to make a full recovery.

The compensation awarded will be used to pay off debts built up through loss of earnings

“The compensation I have been awarded will be used to pay off debts I built up through loss of earnings whilst I was off,” explained Stewart.

“It has been a real struggle recovering from this accident; I have lost the use of the top of my damaged finger and will be on blood pressure tablets for the rest of my life. There is ongoing stiffness in my damaged finger which is made worse by the cold weather.

“On top of all this, I didn’t hear anything from my employers while I was on sick leave, not a thing.”

Joanne Evans from Thompsons Solicitors who represented Stewart said: “It was very clear who was at fault and the circumstances are inexcusable for any employer let alone a multinational company. The consequences meanwhile for Mr Martin have been dramatic.

“This accident was a perfect example of how important it is to properly maintain work equipment, of the need for regular risk assessments and what nonsense it is for the government to describe the regulations that Balfour Beatty should have followed as Red Tape.”