In 13 years of providing compensation in all major areas of public injury law and accidents at work, Accident Advice Helpline are no strangers to some of the more bizarre cases, where it may seem as if health and safety has gone out of control. Keen and well intentioned local authorities are determined to eliminate all sources of accidents at work and can sometimes be a little over-zealous in the application of their measures, as the below example will demonstrate.
Potential accident with elderly woman
An elderly woman in Hull had her rubbish collection discontinued after bin-men refused to cross a four inch step outside her home, in order to collect her wheelie bin, as it was a ‘health and safety hazard.’
Priscilla Thomas, 76, was told that unless she lowered her wheelie bin down the step and on to the pavement herself, her rubbish bags would not be collected by bin men.
Some councils say they will not collect rubbish if a wheelie bin is not properly closed, as it could be a health and safety hazard.
Authorities including Liverpool, Sheffield, Bristol, Cardiff, Nottingham, Harrow and Barnet will only take waste away if the bin is properly shut, with many claiming this was over fears that bin men could be injured by sharp objects protruding from the overflowing plastic bags.
Portsmouth city council has banned wheelie bins altogether, over fears that they were causing workers back pain. It is one of the few local authorities not to have lifting gear on its dustcarts, and residents have been ordered to leave their rubbish in sacks.
Manual handling is still a very real and serious occupational hazard, and the above example, with this elderly woman, demonstrates an area where a local authority has attempted to reduce instances of work-related injuries due to manual, but has been perhaps too extreme in the application of its measures. Manual handling can result in many injuries, such as back pain, and it’s of the utmost importance that employees be protected from unnecessary risks.
If you’ve been a victim of an accident due to manual handling in your workplace within the last three years, and it wasn’t your fault, then you may be entitled to work accident compensation. Accident Advice Helpline has an extensive legal team across the UK, who are experienced in all areas of personal injury law. Contact us today to find out more on 0800 689 0500.
Date Published: December 9, 2013
Author: David Brown