A Guide To Fatigue And Tiredness Accident At Work Compensation Claims

tiredness accident at work / accident at work caused by tiredness

By Brett Williams. Last Updated 19th August 2021. Welcome to our guide on claiming for an accident at work caused by tiredness. If you were injured due to a tiredness accident at work, you could seek compensation if it wasn’t your fault. Our guide provides essential advice on eligibility.

Tiredness and fatigue in the workplace can result in serious injuries. Should you have been tired due to pressures from your employer, you may not have been functioning at your best when the accident occurred.

There are many reasons for tiredness in the workplace which includes working longer than usual hours without sufficient breaks.

Our guide explains how you could seek compensation for injuries sustained in a tiredness at work accident that wasn’t your fault.

To find out more, please continue reading our guide and discover whether you have grounds to sue for compensation. Alternatively, for free legal advice from one of our specialist advisers, please call a member of the team on 0800 073 8801 today.

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A Guide To Tiredness Accident At Work Compensation Claims

Chronic fatigue syndrome is a medical condition that should be taken seriously by everyone in the workplace. Both employers and employees should not put themselves at risk of injury due to chronic fatigue.

That said, and though it may not be a clinical condition, there are certain work environments that put you more at risk of suffering fatigue. You may suffer a minor cut in a tiredness at work accident or you could sustain severe head injuries.

More than 3.5 million people work shifts in the UK, in a variety of industries. If you work long hours that don’t allow for adequate rest, you could be at risk of suffering an injury in a tiredness at work accident. Ill-designed shift pattern can also lead to fatigue.

Employers have a duty to protect the health and safety of their employee’s, which could include assessing the risk of employees suffering fatigue when they are working.

Our guide covers the consequences of being tired at work and how it can negatively impact your ability to carry out your job safely. We go into your employer’s duty of care towards you and when, if you are injured in a tiredness at work accident, an employer may be liable.

We explain how you could make an accident at work claim by seeking the assistance of a No Win No Fee lawyer. Additionally, we provide advice on the benefits of signing a Conditional Fee Agreement.

To find out more about claiming compensation for a tiredness at work accident and whether a No Win No Fee lawyer would take on your claim, please continue reading our guide.

If you would like to discuss your case with a member of our team, please do so and receive free legal advice on how to make a personal injury claim.

What Are Fatigue Accidents At Work?

Fatigue causes your mental performance and physical performance to decline.

According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), it is said that workplace accidents caused by fatigue cost the UK between £115 to £240 million a year.

The number of shift workers stands at more than 3.5 million, encompassing a variety of industries. Tiredness accidents at work can occur due to poorly designed rotas. Additionally, long shifts with little time for rest and recovery can also cause fatigue.

A worker’s physical and mental performance is negatively impacted when working long hours without adequate rest breaks. The consequences include:

  • Lack of concentration
  • Slower reactions
  • Lowered awareness
  • Lack of attention
  • Reduced coordination
  • Unable to assess risk properly
  • Absent-mindedness
  • Reduced productivity

Fatigue in the workplace is also linked to heavy workloads as well as shift work. There have been disastrous major accidents that reportedly happened due to tiredness and fatigue:

  • Exxon Valdez
  • Chernobyl
  • Texas City
  • Challenger
  • Herald of Free Enterprise

 A member of our team will let you know whether you have grounds to sue for compensation and provide free legal advice on how best to proceed with a claim.

Symptoms Of Fatigue And Tiredness At Work

If you work long hours at night or your workload is routinely heavy, you are at greater risk of suffering accidents, incidents or injuries. Symptoms of fatigue and tiredness include:

  • Emotional exhaustion
  • Physical exhaustion
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Sore or aching muscles

Tiredness can prevent you from working efficiently and could put you at risk of being injured in a tiredness at work accident.

To speak to a member of our team about seeking compensation for injuries caused by an accident at work caused by tiredness, please get in touch today and receive free legal advice.

How Does Fatigue Affect Worker Safety?

Fatigue can seriously and negatively impact safety in the workplace. When you are tired at work it can affect your ability to make the right decisions and could negatively impact your ability to work.

The consequence of work-related fatigue can be significant. NHS research, for example, suggests:

  • There is a degree of negativity (for nurses, patients, or both) towards 12-hour shifts
  • Nurses working 12-hour shifts or longer are more likely to rate the quality of care in their workplace as poor. They are also more likely to give a lower patient safety rating attributed to the environment.

Fatigue in the workplace can result in the following:

  • Reduced awareness
  • Lowered concentration
  • Impaired motor skills

If you believe that your injury was sustained because of fatigue that was caused by unsafe working patterns, get in touch today.

What Is Your Employer’s Duty Of Care To Prevent Tiredness In The Workplace?

Employers must, by law, protect employees whether permanent or temporary. Just like any other hazard, fatigue and tiredness in the workplace should be managed. If your employer fails to make sure you are working shifts that allow for adequate rest, they could be deemed negligent if their actions lead to an accident or injury.

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 outlines that:

  • Employers must protect staff from injury. (This includes managing and preventing fatigue in the workplace.)

In short, managing fatigue in the workplace is part of your employer’s duty of care towards you and other members of staff.

Preventing Fatigue At Work

To prevent you from experiencing fatigue, an employer may:

  • Ensure your working hours are within the lawful requirement with adequate rest breaks.
  • Check that your shift pattern allows you to have adequate rest between shifts.

Your employer could also, where reasonably possible, ensure that you are not doing too much overtime.

Employers should also respect The Working Time Regulations 1998 which sets out the following:

  • Staff should not work more than an average of 48 hours per week. (The worker can work more hours than this so long as they do it voluntarily and put it in writing.)
  • They should not work over 6 hours without taking an adequate rest break.
  • Adult employees are given at least 11 consecutive non-working hours between shifts.
  • Adult staff are given 1 day off every week (7 days).
  • Anyone who works night shifts must not work more than 8 hours per 24 hours

If you are a GB domestic driver of goods vehicles, the regulations differ:

  • The daily driving limit is no more than 10 hours in a day on a public road.
  • You can’t be on duty for more than 11 hours on a work day.

To confidentially find out whether your employer breached their duty of care, and whether you could claim for an accident at work caused by tiredness, why not get in touch today?

What Is Your Employer’s Liability For Tiredness Accidents At Work?

An employer is responsible for protecting your safety in the workplace and this includes taking reasonable steps to ensure you do not suffer from fatigue.

If, for example, they require you to work more than 48 hours a week and don’t allow you to opt out of this, they could be contributing to your fatigue. They could therefore be liable if you were to suffer an injury because of an accident your fatigue caused.

A colleague may have raised concerns about their lack of rest breaks and that they were suffering symptoms of fatigue to your employer. If your employer didn’t attempt to rectify this and the colleague caused an injury to you because of fatigue, your employer could be liable.

If your employer fails in their duty of care towards you and you suffer an injury in a tiredness accident at work, they could be liable.

Workplace Tiredness And Fatigue Risk Factors

There are specific risk factors associated with tiredness and fatigue in the workplace. Consequentially, fatigue, burnout, and tiredness should be considered a work-related hazard. As such, employers should carefully assess and manage the hazard.

Fatigue risk factors include a tiredness related accident at work occurring due to:

  • Insufficient rest breaks during a night shift.
  • Employees being given too much overtime and not being allowed to opt-out.

Employers should abide by the law but also manage fatigue risk factors in the workplace. Additionally, your employer could risk assess changes to your working hours and abide by HSE ‘fatigue risk index’.

An employer could also set in place guidance relating to limits on working hours which could include overtime and the safe swapping of shifts between employees.

If you’re considering claiming for an injury because of an accident at work caused by tiredness, call our expert advisers on the number at the top of the page.

Night Shifts And Fatigue

Working irregular hours and working night shifts can disrupt your body’s internal body clock. It can also result in difficulties sleeping and, if not managed properly, it can lead to fatigue in the workplace.

The consequences of fatigue include being:

  • Less alert
  • Slower to react
  • Unable to concentrate

The above can lead to you suffering an injury in a tiredness accident at work. Your employer should, as reasonably as possible by law, make sure you are safe in the workplace. This could include carrying out risk assessments such as ensuring working hours are lawful. They must then set in place measures to rectify the problems they find.

Workplace Stress Leading To Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is characterised by extreme fatigue and tiredness, though there is a wide range of other symptoms. It is recognised as a debilitating condition and symptoms can take a long time to diminish with treatment. Some sufferers may never fully recover.

CFS is also referred to as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) or systemic exertion intolerance disease (SEID). It is believed that overwork and stress can lead to chronic fatigue.

If you are injured in a tiredness at work accident that wasn’t your fault, please get in touch with a member of our team today.

Fatigue And Tiredness Accident At Work Compensation Calculator – Updated August 2021

The table below provides information on the level of compensation that could be awarded for specific injuries. We’ve taken the figures from the Judicial College Guidelines. Courts and lawyers may use the JCG to value injuries that claimants sustain.

The amounts do not provide information on special damages (compensation for financial loss) that you could receive in a successful tiredness at work accident claim.

Type of injury sustained at workSeverity of injuryGeneral Damages awarded
Fractures of CheekbonesSerious (i)£9,570 to £14,810
Neck injuryModerate (iii)£7,410 to £12,900
Back injuryMinor (ii)£2,300 to £7,410
Arm injuryAmputation at the shoulderNo less than £128,710
Leg injuryLess Serious (i)£16,860 to £26,050
Ankle injuryModerate£12,900 to £24,950
Chest injuryRib fractures or soft tissue injuries leading to serious pain and disability for weeks.Up to £3,710

Workplace Fatigue Special Damages

Special damages are compensation for out-of-pocket expenses incurred because of your injury. You would need evidence of financial losses in order to recover costs.

Medical Costs

  • You can claim the cost of prescriptions, medical care/treatment that you pay for. (You should seek the counsel of a legal expert to ensure you could recover the cost of certain private treatments.)

Care Costs

  • If you need help with daily chores during your recovery, you can include care costs no matter who takes care of you.

Travel Expenses

  • Getting to and from appointments to a medical facility or solicitor can be claimed as travel expenses.

Lost Earnings

  • You could claim lost earnings if your injuries caused you to take unpaid leave from work. And if you cannot work again, you could claim lost future earnings.

No Win No Fee Tiredness Accident At Work Claims

Working with a personal injury lawyer on a No Win No Fee basis offers many benefits.

When you sign a Conditional Fee Agreement, you may find yourself no longer concerned about funding the services of a solicitor. This is because you:

  • Only pay a No Win No Fee lawyer’s fees when you win your case.
  • Do not have to pay this fee if you lose your case.
  • Don’t have to pay an upfront solicitor’s fee.
  • Only pay the solicitor’s fee once you’ve received your compensaiton.

To discuss a tiredness at work accident claim with a member of our team, please get in touch today.

Start Your Claim

To look into making a claim and for free legal advice, a member of our team is here to take your call.

Accident at work caused by tiredness – FAQs

Can I claim if I’m injured at work because I’m tired?

You may be eligible for compensation if your tiredness was caused by your employer’s negligence and caused you to be injured. For example, a claim might be possible for injuries caused because you’d worked too many hours or because you weren’t allowed to take sufficient rest breaks.

How long do accident at work claims take?

The amount of time a personal injury claim takes to be processed will depend on whether your employer admits liability for a) the accident in which you were injured and b) the injuries you are claiming for. If they do, the claim could be finalised in as little as 6-months. However, if the claim is contested, it could take over a year to be processed while additional negotiations take place.

Will I get into trouble for claiming compensation from my employer?

According to employment law, it is illegal to have any type of action taken against you for making a claim against your employer. That means, if your claim is honest, you cannot be sacked or disciplined.

For more advice on claiming for an accident at work caused by tiredness, please give our friendly team a call today.


Information on accident statistics: HSE statistics

Chronic fatigue syndrome advice: Advice on chronic fatigue syndrome

Guide to accident at work compensation: Accident at work payouts

Our guide to broken leg compensation amounts: Compensation amounts guide

Advice on elbow injury compensation: Accident at work elbow injury guide

Thanks for reading about claiming for an accident at work caused by tiredness.

Guide by HW

Edited by RV