201612.21

Reluctant to Sue Your Giant Employer after An Accident at Work? Don’t Be!

Accident victims may understandably feel that they have little chance in taking on big companies in court – but a good solicitor has no such concerns. In one case, a Tesco driver who was stricken by an extremely rare back condition following an incident at work won the right to substantial compensation.

The man had worked for the supermarket chain for 17 years and was engaged in moving trailers around the yard of a distribution centre. After he drove over a sunken fire hydrant during the night shift, he experienced immediate searing back pain. The severe jolt had ruptured a disc in his spine.

After being treated in hospital, he was diagnosed with Cauda Equina Syndrome and underwent surgery. He had been left suffering from double incontinence, persisting numbness and weakness and residual neurological symptoms in his left leg. Tesco disputed the circumstances of the accident and argued that, even if it had happened as claimed, it had not caused the man’s condition.

Ruling in his favour on both those issues, the Court found him an honest witness who had given an accurate account of the accident. Although he already had a vulnerable back at the time, the Court was satisfied on the basis of expert medical evidence that the accident had caused his Cauda Equina Syndrome. The amount of his compensation had yet to be assessed but was likely to be substantial.

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