Injured worker settles claim for $1,700,000 compensation after having his hand crushed under a container

Published 09 Jul 2013

We acted for Mr P who was employed as a truck driver by a trucking company operating from Sydney. His job was to drive a truck around delivering empty containers to the Port Botany empty yard where they were meant to be dropped off. On the day in question, Mr P noticed that the truck that he was driving was faulty as the twist locks that lock the container into position were broken and the container was only being held by one twist lock.

As he arrived into the empty yard to drop off the container he noticed that the twist lock was jammed. Mr P asked a forklift driver an employee of Patricks Port Logistics to lift the container so that he can try to unjam the twist lock. As he attempted to do so, the forklift driver unexpectedly dropped the container onto Mr P’s hand, crushing it severely and leaving him with horrendous injuries.

When the forklift driver realised that he had dropped the container he raised it allowing Mr P to remove his very badly injured hand. An ambulance was called and Mr P was rushed to hospital where he had emergency surgery and the doctors who performed the surgery had managed to do such a good job that Mr P was able to keep his hand however he has lost significant function. Mr P was right hand dominant and he relied on his right hand for everything.

As a result of the accident, Mr P was unable to return to employment and he was paid workers compensation payments.

Mr P instructed the offices of Gerard Malouf & Partners Compensation Lawyers to act for him. Mr P was given advice that he had a claim against his employer and also against Patricks Port Logistics as a result of the forklift driver’s negligence in dropping the forklift onto his hand.

A workers compensation claim was filed in the Supreme Court of New South Wales and following receipt of appropriate medical evidence the matter was referred to Mediation. At Mediation no offers of settlement were conveyed to Mr P on the basis that the defendant contended that Mr P did not communicate with the forklift driver and that he should have placed his hand under the container.

The matter could not be resolved at Mediation and had to proceed to Trial. At Trial the defendant offered Mr P an offer in the sum of $1,700,000.00 and given the difficulties with liability Mr P was advised to accept the sum of money. The case was a difficult case however we were still able to spend thousands of dollars on medical and expert reports which assisted us in convincing the insurance company to make a substantial offer to Mr P in circumstances where he could have easily lost his case had he proceeded to Trial.

Mr P was pleased with the result as the compensation settlement allowed him to move on with his life and attempt to regain some level of independence having not being able to work for over four years. Mr P had intentions of using the money to open up his own business and was thrilled with the result.

We are a highly specialised firm of compensation lawyers, specialising in compensation type matters. We are large enough to support the financial support to assist you to win your case but small enough to be able to give you a specialised service.

If you have been injured a work related accident and require advice then please contact the offices of Gerard Malouf & Partners Compensation Lawyers and ask to speak to Ray Abbas for further information. Remember that we operate on a first consultation free basis and a no win no fee arrangement.