201811.01
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Refuse Worker Awarded €224,000 Work Injury Compensation

At the High Court a factory worker, who fell to the ground and suffered a severe ankle injury when he attempted to free a trapped bin, has been awarded €224,000 damages.

The man in question, Tomasz Zdejszy, was employed at a waste collection business when he suffered permanent damage to his ankle. Tomasz fell nine feet to the ground when the accident occurred in April 2012 at the business park in Blanchardstown, Dublin 15.

Judge Michael Hanna said, while giving judgment, that the 37-year-old man had climbed up on a waste paper container to try and free a bin, which had become stuck, by kicking it. The Judge said that Mr Zdejszy jhad begun to climb down from the position due to becoming afraid of the height. At this point a co-worker handed him a metal bar to assist in dislodging the stuck bin.

In his case against his employer Stewart Foil Ltd,  Tomasz claimed that there had been a failure to ensure the safe and proper removal of an obstacle to waste collection without the necessity of Mr Zdejszy working at a height when, he claimed, it was dangerous to do.

In his work injury compensation claim against Panda Waste Services, he stated that he was expected to remove a rubbish bin on a waste container while working at a height. Additionally, he claimed that he was given an inappropriate implement, a metal bar, to accomplish this task.

In his ruling Justice Hanna found 20 per cent contributory negligence on the part of Mr Zdejszy due to the fact that he did not use sufficient care in relation to his own safety. He deemed that Stewart Foil Ltd were two thirds responsible and Panda Waste Services one third responsible for the accident.

Judge Hanna told the High Court that Mr Zdejszy had suffered a typical injury for such a fall, with a severe fracture of the right side of his foot, extending into his ankle joint. This fracture resulted in arthritis on the joint, which required surgical fusion. He experienced permanent loss of movement in his ankle, a loss of heel height of approximately an inch on the injured side and had been left suffering constant pain.