Archive for January, 2011

Family of Killed Lorry Driving Instructor Awarded Almost 180,000 Pounds

Posted on: January 28th, 2011

The family of Alan Underwood, a lorry driving instructor who was killed in a freak accident, are to receive almost 180,000 in compensation following a High Court ruling in London.

Judge Sir Christopher Holland at the High Court was told how Alan Underwood, 48, of Far Cotton, Northamptonshire, was instructing Mrs Corinne Radburn, of Bilton, Rugby, on emergency stop procedures when Mrs Radburn failed to execute the manoeuvre in time, and crushed Mr. Underwood between the 18-ton truck and a parked trailer.

Mr. Underwood had been out of the cab at the far end of a set of cones laid out for the training exercise. The court was told that Mr. Underwood then told Mrs Radburn to proceed at a speed of 20 miles per hour before performing the emergency stop in front of them. Unfortunately, Mrs Radburn was not able to do so, and Mr. Underwood was killed instantly.

The action, brought against the insurers of Mr Underwood’s employers, Sterling Training Service, of Basildon, and Mrs Radburn, was originally for 250,000 but adjusted down by 30% due to Mr. Underwood’s contributory negligence of standing in front of the vehicle at the time.

Hearing Loss Compensation for ex-Employees of Truck Company

Posted on: January 25th, 2011

At least 60 ex-employees of Foden Trucks are to receive work claims compensation payments for loss of hearing sustained due to high levels of noise at the Sandbach, Staffordshire, factory.

The previous insurance company of the now-closed Foden Trucks factory have agreed to make work claims compensation payments to former employees who can show they have suffered a hearing impairment due to working in the noisy environment between 1959 and 2001.

In the case for the previous employees, it was claimed that they were exposed to high levels of noise from a variety of air-powered hand tools with no hearing protection. Many people who had been employed for a long period of time on the factory floor now suffer various degrees of tinnitus and other hearing loss complaints.

Individual amounts of hearing loss work claims compensation are yet to be announced, and the process could be delayed due to the need for independent medical examination and the expectation that more former employees of the ex-truck manufacturers may still come forward.

Professional Negligence Claim against Barclays

Posted on: January 23rd, 2011

Barclays Bank has admitted mis-selling an investment bond to two elderly pensioners from Lancaster, and now face a professional negligence claim for of 23,000 pounds.

The couple, Bob (73) and Lilian Baldwin of Waddington, Lancashire, were convinced by the bank to put 80,000 pounds of their savings into a bond which was promoted to them by the bank as being a cautious investment. However, the bond was speculative, and its subsequent underperformance lost the couple 14,000 pounds.

Mr Baldwin was forced to take a legal action after several unanswered letters of complaint to Barclays chief executive John Varley, and only after the Baldwins had taken professional advice were Barclays prepared to admit their professional negligence, and offered the Baldwins 23,000 pounds in compensation.

Note – This is just one occurrence of mis-selling by Barclays, who were fined 7.7 million pounds by the Financial Services Authority in January 2011. It is estimated that more than 12,000 clients have been victims of their professional negligence.

Secretary Wins Constructive Dismissal Compensation Case

Posted on: January 22nd, 2011

A secretary, formerly employed by the Welsh law firm of Jeffreys & Powell, has won a legal battle against her ex-employers for constructive dismissal compesnation after suffering years of taunts about her physical disability.

Janet Goodwin, 53, of Brecon, Powys, told the employment tribunal in Cardiff how she was the subject of office jokes in the law firm, due to a severe sciatica condition which causes her to walk with a limp.

Janet alleged that one of the senior partners, Barry Beck, would often follow her around the office, mimicking her pronounced limp and reducing her to tears by referring to her as “Peggy” or “Peg-leg”.

Despite Janet tackling the issue with Mr. Beck, the ill- treatment continued and encouraged the other partners at the law firm. Janet departed her position at Jeffreys & Powell after four years when she could stand the insults no longer.

The employment tribunal upheld Janet’s claims for constructive dismissal compensation and disability-related discrimination, and will determine the level of compensation at a later date.

Van Fall Compensation of 500,000 Pounds Compensation for Delivery Driver

Posted on: January 22nd, 2011

A delivery driver, who had not been trained to use the tail-gate lift controls on his van, is to receive half a million pounds in van fall compensation after sustaining serious injuries when falling from the vehicle.

Colin White, 53, from Altrincham, Manchester, was left temporarily paralysed after the incident in 2005, which happened as he and a colleague were making a delivery in York.

Neither Colin nor his colleague had been trained to use the tail-gate lift on the van which had been provided for the job and on one occasion when Colin stepped backwards out of the van, the tail-gate lift had moved.

Colin had a heavy fall, hitting the back of his neck against the tail-gate lift and sustaining serious injuries. Doctors have advised him that he will never be able to work again and, although Colin is no longer paralysed, he suffers constant pain.

DePuy Hip Replacements Cause Confusion

Posted on: January 21st, 2011

Despite promises by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) that the vast majority of people who had DePuy Orthopaedics hip replacements implanted will not need revision surgery, an expert professor from Newcastle has claimed that as many as 50% of Irish victims would need new hips within 6 years.

Dr. Thomas Joyce, a reader in biotribology at the School of Mechanical and Systems Engineering, Newcastle University, has said during a conference in Dublin that, of the 3,516 DePuy hip replacement systems that have been implanted in Ireland since 2003, about 50% will need replacing within 6 years.

His allegations are based on studies of over 500 DePuy hip replacement patients in the U.K. – more than half of whom have experienced a joint failure within this period due to the “metallic wear debris” that can cause tissue damage and weaken the bone surrounding the implant. DePuy Orthopaedics Inc has already noticed a “higher than expected” failure rate and recalled the faulty ASR Articular Surface and ASR XL Acetabular systems late last year.

However, the HSE says that it has already conducted blood tests and precautionary x-rays on 2,022 patients as a precautionary measure, and has found very few who currently require revision surgery. They intend to continue to monitor the patients over a five year period under an agreement with DePuy Orthopaedics Inc.

Scarring Compensation for Young Boy (7)

Posted on: January 18th, 2011

A young boy, who was knocked down and injured on a pedestrian crossing, is to receive 14,000 pounds in scarring compensation even though the negligent driver who caused his injuries is both uninsured and disqualified from driving.

Liam Brickell, (7) of the Wirral, Merseyside, was just three years old when the accident happened. Liam and his mother were crossing a road near their home, when the motorist did not observe a red traffic light and hit both of them.

Liam was badly bruised and suffered cuts all over his body. Many of the cuts have developed into permanent scars, including a six inch gash on the back of his head. Liam also sustained frequent and painful headaches for six months following the accident.

The scarring compensation, which is to be paid by the Motor Insurers Bureau, will enable Liam to have plastic surgery to remove the majority of his physical scars, but the psychological damage that was caused by this reckless driver may take much longer to heal.

Brain Damaged Boat Hand Wins 7.2 Million Pounds Compensation

Posted on: January 15th, 2011

A boat hand, who sustained catastrophic brain injuries when a gantry collapsed beneath him, has been awarded compensation of 7.2 million pounds.

Kevin Cleightonmills (26) of Bembridge, Isle of Wight, was working as a boat hand for Bembridge Marine Limited when the terrible accident occurred in September 2006. He was in the process of storing a boat, when the gantry on which he was standing collapsed, and Kevin was hit on the head by falling metal.

At first given only a 5 per cent chance of surviving his catastrophic injuries, Kevin’s condition worsened when he developed post-traumatic hydrocephalus (“water on the brain”) and had to undergo extensive surgery. Luckily he survived, but requires around-the-clock support and experiences problems with memory, concentration and fatigue.

Liability was accepted, and announcing the compensation settlement at London’s High Court, Judge Gary Burrell QC said the award was in Kevin’s best interests and praised his family for their dedication.