Road traffic accident injury
The most common type of car crash injury is undoubtedly whiplash, most commonly suffered by the occupants of a vehicle that is shunted from behind by another car, bus etc, whose driver has not been paying attention to the road or who has lost control. It can also occur in the event of head on collisions and side impacts.
It happens when soft tissue in the area of the neck, back and shoulders is stretched and damaged. This is because the head, the heaviest part of the body, bounces about uncontrollably for a split second in the event of a sudden and unexpected impact. Whiplash can cause severe discomfort and inconvenience and the symptoms can take a few days to appear. On top of pain and stiffness in the neck, shoulders, or back (or all three if you’re very unlucky) you may also feel numbness or tingling in the fingertips due to temporary nerve damage.
Each case depends on individual circumstances, of course, but the average successful whiplash claim usually attracts an award in the region of between £2,000 and £4,000, to give you an idea. This is because whiplash can mean a person is unable to work or go about their daily routine for several weeks.
In more severe cases, car crashes can lead to head injuries, which may themselves lead to brain damage, personality changes, and permanent disability.
In the past six months the record for the UK’s highest compensation payment has been broken three times – Wasim Mohammed, Manny Helmott and Chrissie Johnson have received £11 million, £13 million and £17 million respectively after their lives were ruined in car crashes.
All employees in the UK have their safety enshrined in law. An employer is responsible for your safety, and is liable to face prosecution if they do not fulfil that obligation sufficiently. Prosecution in turn leads to companies being fined and to employees seeking compensation for their injuries.
Your employer has to make sure they come up to scratch in all areas of the working environment they provide for you. This means that they must train you and all your colleagues to do the job they ask of you, and thoroughly; they must provide you with the correct equipment, whether this be protective gear or the correct machinery to perform a task safely and they must ensure that your physical environment is safe.
This could mean anything from making sure scaffolding is properly constructed to keeping an eye on wires trailing across office floors.
If you have an accident at work and it genuinely isn’t your fault, then you could claim compensation if you have been hurt in a more than trivial manner.
Date Published: October 14, 2010
Author: David Brown