Member receives compensation after work crush injury

A former recovery driver has been compensated after he was involved in an accident at work that has left him relying on the use of a catheter.

51-year-old Unite member, Shaun Fletcher, was loading a car onto his recovery truck outside Tesco in Harford Bridge, Norwich, when the towing eye connected to his vehicle lost connection from the car.

The car rolled off the truck and crushed Shaun against another vehicle, which caused fractures to his pelvis and a tear to his urethra.

As a result, he was in and out of hospital for treatment for more than six months. An operation confirmed that his urethra was irreparably damaged, meaning that he cannot urinate and doctors warned that he may have to self-catheterise for the rest of his life.

Following the accident, Shaun was laid off by his employer and he has only worked occasionally since because of his injury.

Shaun said: “My employer assumed that I’d know exactly what to do on the job, just because I had brief experience of working in vehicle recovery.

“I now understand that my accident could have been avoided if I had had adequate training. If I had known how to use the safety strap as well as the winch when loading vehicles onto the truck my situation could be very different to what it is now. 

“I’ve lost a lot of money because of the accident, but what’s worse is the affect it has on my personal life because I rely on a catheter.”

He contacted Unite Legal Services to investigate a compensation claim.

Shaun added: “The service I had from Unite was invaluable, allowing me to secure justice for what happened to me.” 

Peter Kavanagh, Regional Secretary from Unite the Union, said: “It is standard procedure for all employers to provide training so that employees can safely carry out their job. When this doesn’t happen, accidents are bound to happen, as Shaun’s case clearly shows.

“Shaun’s Unite membership allowed him access to free legal support, meaning that he could receive 100% of the compensation secured for him.”