On 18 August 2021 Elaine Crawford from East Kilbride was involved in an accident at work. Mrs Crawford was referred to Thompsons Solicitors in Scotland by her union, UNISON, so that we could pursue personal injury compensation on her behalf.
As an employee of South Lanarkshire College our client had been owed a duty of care and we were confident that Mrs Crawford's trip and fall claim would be successful.
On the date of the accident at work, Mrs Crawford was employed as a finance assistant primarily working in an office situated within the college. At approximately 11am the fire alarm sounded and, along with her colleagues, Mrs Crawford was required to evacuate her workplace.
Once out of the building, Mrs Crawford proceeded down a service road at the rear of the building; she was wearing flat, slip-on trainers at the time. The service road contained plastic speed bumps fixed to the road surface with screws. As she walked along the road, Mrs Crawford caught her foot on a raised plastic fitting on one of the speed bumps.
She fell to the floor, landing on her right hand.
Following the fall, Mrs Crawford realised immediately that she had injured her right hand, wrist and arm. She was helped to a sitting position by colleagues and, as she sat there, a contractor who had been working onsite approached her. He immediately pointed out that a part of the speed bump was sticking up.
Mrs Crawford was taken to hospital by a colleague where X-rays revealed she had fractured her hand in several places. Her fingers were splinted and taped together for stability and she was sent home with bandages around her hand.
While Mrs Crawford later underwent physiotherapy for her hand injury, she continued to suffer pain in her fingers, and reduced movement and grip. She was unable to work for almost six weeks following the trip accident at work.
Thompsons' personal injury solicitors intimated a claim with Mrs Crawford's employers and liability was admitted.
We instructed a consultant orthopaedic surgeon to write an expert witness medical report. This report confirmed that Mrs Crawford had sustained a fracture of her ring finger and two fractures of the little finger on her right hand. The fractures did not require surgery.
It was noted that Mrs Crawford's symptoms underwent gradual improvement until January 2022. Following this, her residual symptoms were considered permanent.
It was also noted that future deterioration in her little finger is possible as a result of the displaced nature of the inter-articular fracture which increased pain in the proximal inter-phalangeal (PIP) joint.
The medical evidence was sent to the defenders' insurer and a settlement offer of £8,500 was made. We discussed this offer with Mrs Crawford and it was rejected.
A further offer of £9,500 was tendered and this was accepted.
The personal injury compensation settlement was agreed on 29 July 2022.