What Are The Maximum Payouts For Forklift Accident Claims?

In this article we discuss forklift accident claims. Learn about personal injury claims and how to make an accident at work compensation claim with a No Win No Fee solicitor. 

Legislation is in place to protect the health and safety of employees while at work. When employers fail to adhere to health and safety laws and someone is injured as a result, personal injury claims could be made. This includes forklift truck accident claims. We investigate how work related injuries could happen.  Additionally, we look at what you need to prove to claim compensation should you be injured in a lift truck accident.

If you decide to make a forklift truck injury claim, you may find that your claim is made up of two heads. We look at the two heads that could make up personal injury claims. 

You may wish to hire a personal injury solicitor to claim forklift accident compensation. Legal representation could be hired under the terms of a No Win No Fee agreement. To conclude this article, we explain what this means. 

Employee lying on the floor of a warehouse after a forklift accident.

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Select A Section

  1. A Guide To Forklift Accident Claims
  2. How Could A Forklift Accident Injure You?
  3. What Are The Hazards Of Forklift Vehicles?
  4. How Many Forklift Accidents Occur Each Year In The UK?
  5. What Are The Maximum Payouts For Forklift Accident Claims?
  6. How No Win No Fee Solicitors Could Help You

A Guide To Forklift Accident Claims

Section 2 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 (HASAWA) states that while at work, employers owe their employees a duty of care. This means that they must take reasonable steps to ensure your health, welfare and safety. 

Different workplaces will require different reasonable steps. But generally, an employer could take the following action in order to fulfil part of their duty of care:

  • Risk assessments – An accident in a warehouse that uses forklift trucks could occur if an employer fails to carry out the necessary risk assessments to remove or reduce any hazards that pose an injury risk. Under the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, every employer should carry out risk assessments to identify risks employees may be exposed to. 
  • Training – If an employer fails to train staff on the safe use of a forklift truck, an employee could lose control of the lifting aid, causing injury not only to themselves but also to other employees.
  • Maintenance Checks – As part of the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998, any equipment used in the workplace should be fit for purpose and safe to use.

If you have been injured in an accident involving a forklift truck, you may be curious to know if you can make an accident at work claim. To have an eligible personal injury claim against your employer following a forklift injury, you need to be able to meet the below criteria:

  • In accordance with HASAWA your employer owed you a duty of care.
  • This duty of care was breached because your employer was negligent.
  • You suffered an injury or illness due to this breach.

Get in touch with our work accident claims team to discuss if you have an eligible claim for forklift accident compensation. 

How Could A Forklift Accident Injure You?

Both forklift drivers and pedestrians face injury risks from the forklift. In order to make a forklift injury claim, you must prove that employer negligence caused your injuries. 

Forklift truck injuries to pedestrians could include:

  • A crush injury if you are pressed between the forklift and another object or the wall. This could also result in the need for a leg amputation or injuries to the hips and pelvis. 
  • If you are run-over you may experience a crushed foot at work injury. 
  • Unsecured loads or imbalanced loads could result in falling objects or even the forklift toppling leading to a brain injury. This could also occur due to racking or using the forklift to push objects too far onto a shelf, which then causes the objects to fall out of the other side. 

Drivers, too, face injury risks, including:

  • A collision with another vehicle or an object causing a head injury or a neck injury. 
  • If an imbalanced load results in a toppling, the driver may be crushed beneath the forklift. 
  • Mechanical failure of a poorly maintained forklift could also result in injuries, such as broken bones. 

In addition, being involved in a forklift accident, or even witnessing a forklift accident may result in mental health injuries. These could range from stress, anxiety and depression to post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) of varying degrees. 

Contact our work accident claims team to find out more about forklift accident claims. 

What Are The Hazards Of Forklift Vehicles?

As stated previously, employers owe all their employees a duty of care. In terms of forklifts, an employer should carry out a risk assessment to identify the specific risks of operating that forklift in that particular workspace. 

As part of their duty care, they should ensure that forklift drivers are appropriately trained and qualified to operate the forklift. This could include any refresher training to maintain good driving habits, reassess abilities and learn any new skills required to operate a forklift safely. 

An accident in a warehouse could also occur if there is not enough space to drive the forklift. Additionally, pedestrian areas that are not clearly marked could lead to injury risks. Uneven surfaces could cause a forklift to topple over. Forklift speed as well presents risks, which is why there should be a clear speed limit. 

Forklift accident claims must be supported with evidence that your employer neglected their duty of care. This negligence must have resulted in your injuries. 

Evidence might include:

  • Medical records following your injury. 
  • Witness contact details for a statement at a later date taken by a designated person
  • Work accident log book. This could be filled in with your details as well as details of the accident that caused your injuries. 

Contact our work accident claims team to learn more about supporting evidence. 

How Many Forklift Accidents Occur Each Year In The UK?

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) collects reported accident statistics. These are accidents reported under the Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 2013 (RIDDOR). There were 51,211 total reports of non-fatal injuries during 2020/21. In the graph we have illustrated the most common accidents in the workplace that have caused injury. 

forklift accident claims Non-fatal employee injuries in Great Britain, 2020/21

Non-fatal employee injuries in Great Britain, 2020/21

To learn more about accidents at work, contact our personal injury claims team. 

What Are The Maximum Payouts For Forklift Accident Claims?

If you decide to make a personal injury claim for an accident at work, you may find that your claim is made up of two heads. We provide further detail about both below. 

General Damages

This first head of your personal injury claim seeks to compensate you for your physical injury and any emotional distress the accident caused. To help when assigning value to personal injury claims, legal professionals will use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). The document contains examples of compensation brackets for various injuries. We’ve included a selection of figures from the April 2022 edition in the table. 

Injury Severity Potential Compensation Notes
Leg injuries Amputations (a) loss of both legs (i) £240,790 to £282,010 Both legs lost above the knee or one leg above while the other is lost below the knee.
Severe leg injuries (b) Most serious short of amputation (i) £96,250 to £135,920 Severe injuries including extensive degloving and fractures that haven’t united.
Brain damage Moderately severe (b) £219,070 to £282,010 Serious disability requiring constant care.
Other arm injuries Severe (a) £96,160 to £130,930 Not much better off than if the arm had been amputated due to extremely serious injuries.
Injuries to pelvis and hips Severe (a) (i) £78,400 to £130,930 Substantial residual disabilities from extensive fractures.
Neck injuries Severe (a) (ii) £65,740 to £130,930 Considerably severe disabilities from disc damage or serious fractures.
Foot injuries b £83,960 to £109,650 One foot amputation.
Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) Severe (a) £59,860 to £100,670 A bad impact on all of life’s areas, which is permanent and prevents the same level of functioning experienced before the accident.
Knee injuries Severe (a) (ii) £52,120 to £69,730 Constant pain, movement limitations and impaired agility from leg fractures that extend into the knee.
Back injuries Severe (a) (iii) £38,780 to £69,730 Severe pain and chronic conditions from fractures, disc lesions or soft tissue injuries.

Special Damages

Under this head you could recover costs incurred due to your injuries. In order to claim special damages, however, you must supply evidence. This could include receipts, invoices and wage slips. 

You might be able to recover:

  • Loss of earnings/future earnings. 
  • Medical expenses. 
  • Homes and vehicle adaptations. 
  • Travel costs. 

Get in touch with our advisors to find out more about forklift accident claims. 

How No Win No Fee Solicitors Could Help You

If you decide to sue your employer for negligence, you may wish to hire legal representation. You could hire a No Win No Fee accident at work solicitor providing their services under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA)

This means that your solicitor won’t charge you upfront for their services. They’ll take a fee from the award of a successful accident at work claim. This is called a success fee and it is subject to legal caps. If your forklift injury claim is not successful, your solicitor will not take a success fee. 

Our accident at work advisors can answer your questions 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. If your work injury claim seems like it might be successful and you wish to proceed with our services, you could be put into contact with our solicitors. Our solicitors could offer their services under a CFA if your claim is eligible.  

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