Due to their widespread use across many areas of business we see an array of angle grinder accident claims involving a wide variety of injuries. If you believe that you were injured in an angle grinder accident as a result of negligence then you could have a claim for compensation.
Common Uses Of Angle Grinders
In basic terms an angle grinder is a machine which is focused on a fast spinning wheel made of various types of material. The type of material will dictate the way in which the product is used and takes in the following activities:
- Cutting concrete;
- Cutting stone;
- Cutting metal.
Aside from the basic dangers associated with using such a powerful cutting machine, each activity brings its own challenges. These can include shards propelled into the air at great speed, sparks and excessive heat. There needs to be a focus on the safety of the user at all times as well as those in the local vicinity.
Common Injuries In Angle Grinder Accident Claims
There are a number of different dangers when using angle grinders in various situations. Some of the more common injuries received in angle grinding accidents include:
Angle Grinding Eye Injuries
It is obviously vital that safety equipment is worn at all times when using angle grinders but unfortunately we do see a number of claimants seeking compensation for eye injuries. The range of compensation available can be anywhere between £,1760 for a transient eye injury all the way up to £322,060 for total blindness. The type of eye injury and the longevity on the effect of the victim senses will dictate the level of compensation.
There is no separate range of compensation when it comes to burn injuries as it will simply depend upon the severity of the injuries and the impact on the person’s life. While the majority of angle grinder burn injuries tend to be relatively minor, relatively minor scarring will attract compensation of around £1,360 always up to very severe scarring in the region of £77,580.
Amputation Of Fingers/Hands
While minor hand injuries can attract compensation from £730 up to around £3,460, serious hand injuries from angle grinder accidents including amputation of a finger can lead to compensation payments between £23,110 and £49,350. Where the index and middle fingers both require amputation this effectively renders the hand of little use and compensation will be increased to between £49,350 and £72,330. Injuries to both hands which make them effectively useless in everyday working life will attract compensation of between £112,100 and £160,600.
Cuts And Abrasions From Angle Grinders
The majority of soft tissue damage, cuts and lacerations from angle grinders tend to heal fairly quickly and usually attract compensation up to a maximum £1,950. Unfortunately, there are situations where deeper more serious cuts and abrasions are received when using angle grinders, and facial scarring in particular can receive significant amounts of compensation.
Angle Grinding Health And Safety
While the majority of angle grinder accidents tend to happen in the workplace, this is not always the case. However, where an injury occurs within the workplace it is worth noting that your employer has a legal obligation to ensure your safety and well-being under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and specific guidance on the use of abrasive wheels. In summary this ensures that they must:
- Provide the necessary training;
- Provide the necessary safety equipment;
- Carry out risk assessments;
- Have detailed procedures in place;
- Ensure that those using angle grinders have sufficient skill and experience.
In angle grinder accident claims it is employer negligence which tends to be central to many cases.
Proving Fault In Angle Grinder Accident Claims
In the event of an angle grinder injury it is obviously vital that medical assistance is sought as soon as possible to avoid any complications. This will also ensure that your medical records are updated with details of the accident, injuries and treatment received. This information can be used if you decide to pursue an angle grinder accident claim although you might require other evidence such as:
- Photographs of the location;
- Photographs of injuries;
- Witness statements;
- Examples of similar accidents in the workplace;
- CCTV coverage where applicable.
At the earliest opportunity it is also advisable to write down details of what happened before, during and after the angle grinder accident so that the courts will have the widest picture available to them.
Seeking Legal Advice From A Solicitor
If you’ve been injured in an angle grinder accident and believe you have a claim for compensation you should contact a personal injury solicitor to discuss the strength of your case. Even if you do not want to take any action immediately most solicitors offer a free consultation with no obligation. If after discussing what has happened the solicitor does advise you to start a claim for compensation they will likely want you to do so on a No Win No Fee arrangement in exchange for a success fee. The success fee is usually 25% of any compensation received.
When agreement has been reached with a solicitor your angle grinder accident claim will be filed with the courts with a copy of evidence and details of your accident claim made available to the defendant. If negligence is fairly easy to prove, and indeed in some cases accepted at an early stage, it is likely that a settlement will be discussed before it needs to go to court. If negligence for the angle grinder accident is contested or there is possibly more than just one party involved, leading to potentially shared negligence, this will likely go before the courts were all evidence will be submitted and a judgement made.