Serious injuries at work – Not just in the office

It was reported recently on Wales Online that a doctor had suffered a “Serious spinal injury” while on a team bonding trip out in the Bristol channel and was claiming damages from her employer, the NHS. The trip, which was in 2008, was to be an hour long journey involving the party boarding a 9 meter long inflatable boat labelled “The Pioneer”.

 

When Injuries Occur

When it comes to serious injuries at work, we often find ourselves pulled into thinking about very common situations such as falling from a ladder while working outside, or suffering injury from not wearing correct personal protective equipment. We sometimes think about what could happen in an office such as lifting heavy objects, unlabeled wet floors or objects falling from shelves. What many of us don’t consider, however, is the chances of being injured during the more social and fun aspects of our jobs, team building days.

Days away from the office can take many forms including:

  • Seminars
  • Assault Courses
  • Outdoor Activates
  • New Skill Courses
  • And Many Others

Team building days are when we are able to relax and get to know others in the workplace, bonding with close team members and even some you may not have regular contact with. These days are meant to be in good spirit and boost morale. However, decisions on safety during these events need just as much care and attention for the prevention of accidents as the workplace itself. Real care must be taken when completing risk assessments and carrying them out.

 

Risk analysis outside the office

Chris Walker, Sincere Law’s partner for catastrophic and serious injuries stressed the added importance of creating an enjoyable but safe environment for team days out of office. He told us:

Boating accidents in particular are unfortunately commonplace; they carry higher risks given location and access to immediate help compared to seminars or physical activities such as assault courses. With any event like this it is vital to look after everyone taking part and that proper precautions are in place”.

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The case involving Dr Feest is not uncommon. We regularly receive calls from individuals who fall victim to poor planning and precaution taking while outside of the workplace. If you feel you or a family member has had a similar experience of suffering a serious injury and would like to know more, or enquire about making a serious injury claim; please call us on 0800 092 2896 or contact us here.