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Home > News > Compensation Awarded to HGV Driver For Personal Injuries When High Winds Turned Over His Lorry

8th May 2008

Compensation Awarded to HGV Driver For Personal Injuries When High Winds Turned Over His Lorry

Our client asked our specialist personal injury lawyers for accident claim advice following a road traffic accident during the course of his work. He was an HGV qualified driver and had many years experience in driving large vehicles and heavy loads.

The day prior to his road accident, there had been severe weather reports. When he arrived for work the next day, he asked the gateman whether he had heard about the high winds. Had there been any warnings issued to drivers, they would have come through the gateman. On this morning, however, the gateman had received no information regarding weather conditions and as several other lorries had already left, our client continued with the checks of his vehicle and load. On that day, there were in fact 80-90mph gales.

His route took him across a well-known viaduct which is frequently closed because of high winds. As this was open, our client felt confident to continue. However, about an hour into his journey, his vehicle was blown over, and our client suffered extensive personal injuries in this road traffic accident. His lorry fell onto the drivers side, and slid into the outside lane, travelling some distance before coming to a stop.

Our client’s personal injuries from this road traffic accident included serious head injuries, fractured cheekbones, broken ribs, injuries to his elbow and shoulder, as well as a fractured eye socket and degloving of his scalp. At the time of the accident, he lost consciousness and was taken to hospital where he remained for several weeks whilst he was treated for his many serious injuries. Although he has now made a full recovery from his road traffic accident, he still gets tired very easily. He asked us to represent him in bringing a specialist personal injury compensation claim against his employer.

When he began his employment, several years before the road traffic accident, he was provided with only one journey for training purposes and was never advised of a procedure for what to do in the event of a severe weather conditions forecast. The employer has subsequently issued instructions that, in the event that severe weather warnings are issued, drivers should not leave the depot without specific permission from approved personnel.

On the day of the road traffic accident, his load had been lighter than normal. There is guidance that during high winds, lorries with curtain sides should have them removed to allow the wind to pass through. The type of load being carried that day made this prohibitive, even had our client received that guidance.

At trial, the defendant argued that this road traffic accident was the result of an act of God and that they could not be held liable. Clear Answers specialist road traffic accident lawyers, with extensive experience of work related road traffic accidents, argued that the PUWER Regulation 4 applied in that our client had never been instructed on the correct use of lorries when not carrying a heavy load, or guidance on the correct procedure during severe weather conditions.

The judge found in favour of our client and awarded him £22,000 in road traffic accident compensation.

Compensation Claim

Clear Answers’ lawyers are specialists in all types of road traffic accidents. We have teams of experts waiting to help you, should you decide to instruct us to represent you in your claim, whether you were in a work related accident, or in the course of your private life. Our advisers will be happy to talk to you, in plain English, through the claims process, provide you with expert legal advice and to answer any questions you may have regarding your claim.

If you or a family member has been injured in a road traffic accident, please ring us on 0800 783 9019 and speak to one of our advisers. Alternatively, you may prefer to complete one of our online compensation claim forms and one of our representatives will contact you as soon as possible.

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