In recent years, as warehouses have got bigger, technological advances mean that many have also become a lot more efficient. Even with a lot more automation, though, accidents in warehouses still happen. As warehouse operators have a duty to try and keep their staff safe, any mistakes that lead to injuries could lead to a warehouse accident claim. This article will look at some of the most common warehouse accidents that you could be involved in and when you might be entitled to claim compensation.
We have a team of claims advisors available to help you understand your options by offering a free consultation during which they will discuss your claim with you, review any proof you might have and explain your chances of being compensated. If they are high enough, you could be represented by a personal injury lawyer on our panel. If that happens, you won’t need to pay any legal fees upfront as they’ll manage everything on a No Win, No Fee basis.
To learn more about how warehouse accident claims work, please read on. If you’d rather speak to us straight away, please call on 0800 652 1345 today.
Can I claim compensation for a warehouse accident?
If you work in a warehouse, your employer will have a legal duty to try and keep you safe at work. This duty stems from the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. Also, warehouse operators have a duty to try and protect visitors, customers and anybody else on their premises because of the Occupiers Liability Act 1984.
As such, a warehouse accident claim may be possible if:
- The defendant (the warehouse owner or operator) was negligent; and
- An accident happened in the warehouse as a result; and
- You were injured because of the accident.
If you claim with one of our solicitors, you won’t need to know the intricacies of the legislation listed above. However, you can still make it easier to win your claim by providing supporting proof. We’ll look at what this might include later on.
Duty of care towards warehouse workers
All employees whether working in warehouse surroundings or traditional retail outlets, for example, are protected by a legal duty of care from their employers. While the vast majority of employers do abide by the regulations and guidelines we have seen a number of claims based on common themes such as:
- Substandard training and lack of updates.
- Inadequately maintained machinery.
- Inexperienced warehouse staff carrying out inappropriate duties.
- Lack of regular warehouse safety reviews.
- Substandard or inappropriate safety equipment.
- Extended working hours.
- Lack of warehouse safety procedures.
- Minimal rest breaks.
Just because you agree to work in a particular environment does not mean to say that you have admonished your employer of their legal duty of care. As with any other accidents in the workplace, unless legitimate warehouse injury compensation claims are pursued, nothing is likely to change and others will likely suffer in the future.
Negligence leading to warehouse accident claims
As shown earlier, you can only claim compensation for a warehouse accident caused by the operator’s negligence. Essentially, negligence means the operator has failed to foresee the potential for a warehouse accident and take steps to prevent it.
Examples of the types of negligence that might allow you to claim compensation for a warehouse accident include:
- Failure to carry out regular risk assessments.
- A lack of proper safety training.
- Inadequate or missing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
- Damaged, faulty or poorly maintained workplace machinery and equipment.
- A lack of proper rest breaks.
- Failure to consider methods of reducing the amount of lifting required.
If you believe your injuries were caused by your employer’s negligence, please get in touch and we’ll assess your claim for free.
Examples of warehouse accidents compensation might be claimed for
We won’t provide examples of every type of warehouse accident that could occur here but we have listed some common examples below:
- Slips, trips and falls – These can occur because of leaks, spillages, cables laid across walkways and cluttered warehouses.
- Falls from height – Resulting from damaged, poorly maintained or unsafe platforms or ladder accidents.
- Manual handling injuries – Caused by regularly moving awkward or heavy loads manually.
- Falling objects – Items that are not stacked securely or stored on damaged racking can cause serious injuries if they fall onto a warehouse worker.
- Forklift accidents – Resulting from dangerous driving, untrained staff or poorly maintained vehicles.
- Noise-induced hearing loss – Due to being exposed to excessive noise levels for prolonged periods.
If you’ve had an accident in a warehouse and believe you should receive compensation for your injuries, please speak to us today.
Common injuries caused by workplace accidents
You may be eligible to claim compensation for any injury sustained in a warehouse. Some of the most common injuries from workplace accidents include:
- Crush injuries.
- Broken or fractured bones.
- Concussions and other types of head injury.
- Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI).
- Back problems.
- Cuts and bruises.
- Soft tissue injuries.
- Chemical burn injuries.
If you’re injured in a warehouse, it could lead to a short-term injury that heals in a matter of weeks or months. However, some life-changing or life-threatening injuries can also be sustained in warehouse accidents. If your claim is taken on by one of our solicitors, they’ll aim to secure the maximum compensation needed to cover your suffering.
How much compensation for an accident in a warehouse can I claim?
There are two types of damages used when calculating compensation for a warehouse accident claim. They are general damages which account for the suffering caused by your injuries, and special damages to compensate you for any financial losses associated with your injuries.
While no two warehouse accident claims are the same, in theory, you could be compensated for:
- Physical pain at the time of the accident and any ongoing suffering.
- Stress, anxiety, depression and other forms of psychological injury.
- Loss of enjoyment of any hobbies, family activities or social events your injuries prevents you from participating in.
- Medical expenses such as the cost of physiotherapy.
- The cost of a professional carer or the time a loved one spent supporting you through your recovery.
- Fuel, parking and other transport costs (associated with hospital visits for example).
- Lost earnings. For longer-term injuries, future losses could be recovered too.
- Mobility aids.
- Modifications to your home such as lifts, hoists or ramps if you’ve sustained a long-term disability.
It is important to get a full understanding of how your injuries have and will affect you in the future if you’re to be compensated fairly. To help with this, all warehouse accident claims should be supported by an independent medical assessment.
Usually, this will involve a local meeting with a medical specialist. They’ll refer to your medical notes, examine your injuries and ask questions about them to determine your prognosis. They will then file a report with your employer and their insurer. This will usually form the basis of any compensation awarded.
Providing proof for a warehouse accident claim
After an accident in a warehouse, you probably won’t be thinking about a compensation claim right away. However, if you do decide to claim at a later date, taking some of the following actions after the accident could provide valuable proof:
- Report your accident. It’s important to tell your supervisor about your accident as soon as possible. Legally, they’ll need to note it in the company’s accident report book. You’re entitled to a copy of the report which will help to prove when and where you were injured.
- Seek medical support. Don’t rely on first aid following a warehouse accident. Instead, visit your GP or a hospital to ensure your injuries are diagnosed properly and treated accordingly. Medical records could be obtained later to support your claim.
- Speak to colleagues. If anybody else saw you get injured, ask for their contact details in case your solicitor needs to ask them for a witness statement later on.
- Take photographs. We’d suggest that you take as many pictures of the accident scene as possible. If you can, do this before the scene is cleared.
- Ask for CCTV footage. If your accident was captured on the warehouse’s CCTV systems, ask for a copy of the footage. This should be a priority as most companies delete old data within a month or so.
- Write a statement. To help you remember what happened, it’s a good idea to write down as much as you can. This should include the date, time and location of the warehouse accident. Additionally, you could keep a record of any costs you’ve incurred as a result of the accident.
In addition to the forms of proof listed here, your solicitor might request a copy of any Health and Safety Executive (HSE) investigation as some warehouse accidents will need to be reported to them.
If you’ve managed to secure any proof to support a warehouse injury claim, please let us know when you call as it could improve the chances of your claim being taken on.
Warehouse accident claim time limits
In the UK, there is a 3-year time limit for any type of personal injury claim. For injuries sustained in a warehouse accident, you’ll have 3-years to claim from:
- The date your accident in the warehouse occurred; or
- When your injury was diagnosed by a doctor and linked to your employment.
There is quite a lot of work involved in making a personal injury claim so we’d suggest starting the process asap. Doing so gives you plenty of time to find the proof to support the claim and for your solicitor to arrange a medical assessment.
Will I be sacked for claiming compensation?
It is right and fair that you are compensated for an injury you sustain at work because of your employer’s negligence. However, many potential claimants fear that they’ll lose their job if they sue their employers.
However, employment rights are in place to protect you from being fired, demoted, disciplined, prevented from promotion or stopped from working overtime as a result of a compensation claim.
If any of the above were to happen on the basis of an honest personal injury claim, you may also have grounds to sue for constructive or unfair dismissal.
I was injured whilst visiting a warehouse, can I claim compensation?
It’s important to point out that warehouse operators must try to protect customers and visitors to the warehouse as well as their staff. This might be relevant, for example, if you were making a delivery to a warehouse and were injured in the process because a member of warehouse staff was negligent.
Accident causing a fatal injury
Unfortunately, warehouse accidents involving falls from height, forklift collisions and being trapped by falling stock can lead to fatalities. If you’ve lost a loved one in this way, we know that compensation will never help you cope with your loss.
However, at some point, you may wish to claim back any expenses you’ve incurred such as funeral expenses. Furthermore, you could claim compensation if you were dependent on the deceased’s income.
If you wish to find out more about making a fatal injury claim, please get in touch and one of our friendly advisors will explain your options to you.
No Win, No Fee claims
We know that claiming compensation for injuries against an employer can be stressful. That’s especially true when you consider the cost of legal fees associated with some claims. For that reason, our solicitors provide a No Win, No Fee service for any warehouse accident claim they accept.
Knowing that you won’t pay legal fees unless you receive a compensation payout usually reduces stress levels quite a lot.
Once you’ve signed your No Win, No Fee agreement, your solicitor will act quickly to:
- Work with you to secure proof to support the claim.
- File the claim with the warehouse operator or their insurer.
- Arrange for you to have a medical assessment.
- Communicate on your behalf so you won’t have to deal with any complex questions.
- Fight your corner to try and secure a fair compensation settlement.
If your claim is won, up to 25% of your compensation will be retained by your solicitor as a success fee. This is capped legally and the amount you’ll pay will be clear from the outset as it will be listed in your No Win No Fee agreement.
Start a warehouse accident claim today
We can help if you’d like to know if you’re entitled to compensation for a warehouse accident. Simply call our advisors on 0800 652 1345 to start the ball rolling. During the call, you’ll receive no-obligation legal advice about your next steps.
After your claim has been reviewed, we’ll check to see if one of our personal injury solicitors will represent you. If they agree to help, they’ll manage your claim on a No Win, No Fee basis.
You can connect to our live chat service at any time if you have any more questions about warehouse accident claims.