48-year-old Alan Bailey from Birmingham was incredibly lucky to survive a work place accident which resulted in an angle grinder slashing his throat.
Bailey said “Doctors told me I was literally millimetres from suffering an injury which could have proved fatal.”
The equipment kicked back against a piece of steel which then injured him in August 2011. The accident left him with physical and psychological injuries.
He said “I was using the grinder on a large piece of steel and was wearing full protective equipment when the incident happened. Initially I was just completely stunned and quickly grabbed my neck to try and stem the bleeding.”
He went on to say “I was in absolute agony and was taken by a friend to Russell’s Hall Hospital in Dudley, where I had emergency surgery to clear debris from the wound and repair muscles damaged in the incident.”
The incident left Mr Bailey with a 12-inch scar across his neck and 17 staples, which were removed a few weeks after the operation. He ended up having nine weeks off work but could not do anything for himself and relied on his wife and children for support.
The welder won a five-figure payout after the incident and said “Knowing that we have secured this settlement is a massive relief and a weight off my shoulders. I’m hopeful that this means I will now be able to move on with my life and put what I’ve been through behind me”.
His company, Press Vess Ltd, initially admitted a breach in their statutory duty, but later argued that the grinder didn’t have an appropriate handle fitted for the work that Mr Bailey was using it for. They said that he should have been aware not to use it in such circumstances.
However, investigations revealed that it was never mandatory for the handle on the grinder to be fitted, and it also revealed that no risk assessment was carried out prior to the incident.
Source: Birmingham Mail