A coach driver employed by Veolia Transport has received £6,000 in compensation after help from Thompsons Solicitors when his foot was crushed in a workplace accident.

Steven Nicholson from Thornley in County Durham was forced to take two months off work following the accident at Skipton Coach Park.

The 28-year-old was performing user checks on a coach at the beginning of his shift in March 2010 and, as he opened the bus’ hanger door, it fell from its hinges and landed on his right foot. The vehicle was owned by Veolia Transport.

He suffered severe crush injuries and nerve damage. His foot was put in a cast and he needed physiotherapy to help it recover.

Accident resulted in loss of feeling in foot

He has been left with a loss of feeling in his foot and a residual scar.

Following the accident he instructed Thompsons Solicitors to claim compensation because he had lost out on wages during his time off. Veolia Transport were responsible for maintaining the bus under their Operators Licence.

Thompsons argued that Veolia had not carried out efficient maintenance checks on the bus. The bus had been transferred from a Veolia depot some weeks earlier and had been left to stand with inadequate maintenance.

Veolia accepted liability and settled the claim out of court.

Lost pay due to accident at work

Mr Nicholson, who is now a truck driver, said: “I’m relieved that this claim has finally been settled. I missed out on a lot of pay by needing to take so much time off to recover from my injury. With a young family to take care of I couldn’t afford to lose out on wages.

“It was clear to me that my accident was caused by a lack of maintenance of a vehicle which had essentially been left to rot.”

Ellen Nicholson from Thompsons Solicitors added: “Mr Nicholson was badly let down by Veolia who failed to maintain this bus to a reasonable standard. The problem with the hanger door should have been picked up in regular maintenance checks and repaired to avoid this type of accident from happening.”