Mobile stepladder problem results in long term injury

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Mobile stepladder problem results in long term injury

19th February 2008

The Claimant was injured as a result of an accident at work on the 31st January 2005. The Claimant was an order-picker in a warehouse. He climbed to the top of a mobile stepladder on wheels, to lift a large box from a shelf, which was about 10 feet off the ground. The brakes on the ladder were not working properly. When the Claimant lifted the box, the ladder moved and toppled over, and the Claimant fell to the floor.

The Claimant sustained an unstable fracture dislocation of the right elbow with fractures of the coronoid process of the ulna, fractures of the radial head and disruption of the lateral ligamentous structures of the elbow which required initial manipulative reduction and subsequent surgical repair. The Claimant also sustained a fracture to his scaphoid.

The Defendants insurers admitted liability. Proceedings were issued on the 22nd May 2006.

The Claimant obtained medical reports from Mr Radford, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon dated 2nd February 2006, 8th June 2006 and 15th March 2007.

Although the fractures in the Claimant's arm healed, the Claimant's elbow did not return to normal, and the Claimant continues to suffer pain and has a significant restriction of movement. Mr Radford concluded that there will be no further improvement, and that the condition is permanent.

Further, on the balance of probabilities, the Claimant will develop significant painful arthritis in his elbow by the age of 60. This condition would stop him from being able to do any manual work.

The Claimant is said to be at a permanent disadvantage on the open labour market, and is only fit for full time work in a restricted capacity, and is not fit for full time work involving any heavy manual work with his right arm, including work lifting and carrying heavy items.

The Defendant obtained medical evidence from Mr P Fagg, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon dated 1st February 2007 and 12th March 2007. Mr Fagg agreed that there was some permanent loss of movement in the Claimant's elbow. Mr Fagg differed to Mr Radford, in that he believed that the Claimant was capable of heavy physical work. Mr Fagg stated that there was a 65% chance that the Claimant would develop arthritis by the age of 60. Mr Fagg stated that this condition would stop him undertaking heavy physical work at that time. Mr Fagg agreed that the Claimant was disadvantaged on the open labour market.

The Claimant accepted the sum of £60,000.00, following a Part 36 offer by the Defendants solicitors, ahead of the trial date - 12/03/08.

Stephen Hill, an Associate at Fentons Solicitors, acted for the claimant.

How can Fentons help?
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If you think that you have a case or require further information contact Fentons on 0800 0191 297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.