Compensation for slitterman’s hernia injury

On the morning of 18th December 2014 our client, a 48-year-old slitterman from Clackmannanshire who is a member of UNITE, was lifting bobbins of paper on to a pallet when he suffered significant pain on his left-hand side.

This was followed by a period of several weeks during which he developed persistent pain he believed was attributable to heavy lifting. His typical working day consisted of being required to lift approximately 500 bobbins every day, each bobbin weighing around 9.5kg.

However, the weight of the bobbins had become increasingly heavy in the years leading up to the accident; something which had prompted a number of the pursuer's colleagues to complain. Despite this, no lifting aids were provided and the workers continued to be responsible for the same level of manual handling.

The consequences

The pursuer felt pain as well as a lump in the area of his groin. As a result he visited a supervisor, and then to his GP surgery. He was referred to Forth Valley Royal Hospital. On attending the hospital in January he was diagnosed with an acute left inguinal hernia. This injury required surgery and our client underwent an operation on 30th March 2015.

The pursuer was advised to take six weeks off but did not do so as he had already booked a period of holiday. However, he did miss two days of paid work and also lost some overtime. He also lost the capacity to play golf during the period of his injury, to walk his dog and to move freely and without pain.

The Settlement

The man's workplace manual handling injury claim was raised in the All-Scotland Sheriff Personal Injury Court (ASPIC) as the defenders denied liability. However, they later made an offer to exit the case on a 'drop hands' basis. Two days later the defenders made a tender of £2,000, which was increased to £5,000 at a pre trial meeting. Our client accepted the offer of compensation on 22nd December 2016, with the support of Thompsons personal injury lawyers.

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