Hall Payne secures work injury compensation settlement for injured rural electrician
After our client was injured during an electric arc flash, his employer refused to accept any responsibility. We commenced a claim for damages, and ended up settling the matter out of court. The settlement meant our client was able to support his family and move on from the injury, all without stepping inside a courtroom.
Shaun worked for a labour hire company, working as an experienced electrician in regional Queensland. As part of this work, Shaun was sent to work on a sugar mill as a maintenance electrician providing electrical maintenance at the mill.
When he started work at the mill, Shaun didn’t receive a formal induction and wasn’t told about the existence of multiple live feeds into the existing switchboard unit. While Shaun was performing switchboard maintenance, an electrical arc flash occurred. Shaun sustained serious burns to his face and hands, and developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a consequence of the incident. Unable to return to work as an electrician, his family experienced significant financial hardship.
On behalf of Shaun, Hall Payne commenced a claim for damages against both the owner of the mill and the labour hire company. We alleged both parties had been negligent by not ensuring Shaun’s safety in the workplace. Specifically, we noted the absence of warning markings showing the existence of the second live feed, inadequate schematic diagrams, and a lack of proper procedures and training for the work Shaun was performing.
Both parties strongly denied liability. After persistence from Hall Payne, both defendants finally acknowledged responsibility and made offers compensating Shaun for his past and future losses of income, pain and suffering, superannuation and medical expenses.
Shaun accepted the offers, overjoyed with the outcome and relieved at achieving such a good result without having to proceed to Court. He was most happy to put the whole episode in the past and use the compensation to continue to provide for himself and his family.
Shaun’s case highlights the danger facing even experienced electrical workers when proper workplace procedures, hazard markings and safety and training are absent. It also signifies the importance of ensuring access to fair compensation for workers’ injured as a result of negligence.
Image credit: Garry Knight
This article relates to Australian law; either at a State or Federal level.
The information contained on this site is for general guidance only. No person should act or refrain from acting on the basis of such information. Appropriate professional advice should be sought based upon your particular circumstances. For further information, please do not hesitate to contact Hall Payne Lawyers.