Clinical Negligence

Employee has debris blasted into his face by fire hydrant

Our client, Mr J, was employed to commercially clean railway tracks and platform edges.  He was injured when the fire hydrant he was using to obtain water for cleaning blasted air with fragments of rust, metal and debris into his face.  He sustained injures to his face, eye and psychological trauma.

Mr J was the company director of his own steam cleaning business.  He was contracted to clean the former Waterloo International Railway Station in London.

Mr J requested to attend the station for a site visit prior to starting the cleaning works but his requests where refused by the defendants.

On the day of the cleaning works, none of the defendants gave Mr J a site induction, safety briefing or pointed out any risks or hazards relevant to his work.  He was told he could use the platform fire hydrants or fire hoses to fill his bowser equipment with water for the cleaning.  However he was not pre-warned that the fire hydrants were high pressure hydrants, and was prevented from collecting personal protective equipment (PPE) prior to starting the job.

Mr J stood next to one of the fire hydrants, inserted the key and slowly opened the valve.  As he did this there was an explosive release of trapped air and he was hit in the face with a blast of air which contained fragments of rust, metal and debris.

He sustained non-penetrating eye trauma from multiple metal fragments.  More than 15 pieces of metal had to be removed from his face and around the eyes and he required surgery to remove two large pieces of rust from his left eye.  He also suffered psychological trauma as a result of the accident.

An engineering report was obtained by Jonathan Herbert, acting for the claimant.  The claim was complicated by the fact that there were multiple defendants and investigations were undertaken to ascertain which defendants should be pursued.

After a lengthy process and after obtaining medical reports from experts, Jonathan was able to successfully negotiate a six-figure sum as an out-of-court settlement for Mr J, to compensate him for his pain and suffering.

Jonathan Herbert specialises in accident at work cases.  If you would like to ask Jonathan a question about a potential case, or if you have a general query about any personal injury, contact Jonathan at Thomson Snell & Passmore solicitors on 01892 701226 in confidence.

How can we help?

    Start now, get in touch