$200,000 Compensation for a work injury damages claim for a truck driver with lumbar spine injury

PUBLISHED 09 Aug 2013

We had commenced a work injury damages claim on behalf of one of our clients who was employed as a truck driver and had sustained a significant injury to his lumbar spine.

Unlike other truck drivers where lumbar spine injuries are generally caused due to long trips, rough roads and defective seats, our client sustained his lumbar spine injury due to unsafe system of work and out-dated truck lid and cover.

When the truck has been loaded with the rare material (being gravel or sand), he was then required to cover the back of the truck manually with a heavy shade cloth/canvas cover with a steel frame. A pulley system was devised and our client had to pull this back using physical force. The weight of the cover is approximately 200 kilograms and the excessive weight of the cover had caused a serious back injury.

The employer denied that there was an unsafe system of work. We then commissioned a qualified expert in ergonomics to show that this system was unsafe and did not comply with the Australian Standard for Health and Safety Principles and Practices. The expert clearly showed that the employer was culpable and that the system was not up to the safety standards required also showing that the method is out-dated.

Having prepared the matter and ensuring we have sufficient and supportive medical and expert evidence, we were able to proceed to mediation. The claim was resolved satisfactorily which was a very pleasing outcome for our client who received a very good sum in compensation and it was received without the delay in having the matter proceed to a Court hearing.

Our client received an amount of $200,000.00 for damages and this is in addition to the tax free lump sum compensation we were able to achieve for him for his impairment and pain and suffering claim. The total tax free benefits received by our client was $1/4 million. We were able to achieve this result despite the fact that our client was not on a high income.

Proper preparation ensured an outstanding result for compensation and a very happy client.

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