A builder who lost a finger in an accident at work has received compensation.

GMB member Albert Hardy, 58, from Chesterfield has been forced to change trades after his index finger on his left hand was amputated following the accident while working for a building firm in Belper.

He was using a handsaw to remove shuttering, a type of boarding used to hold concrete when putting down foundations, which was sticking up from the ground.

Circular saw cut into hand

One of his directors told him to use a circular saw for the job which meant Mr Hardy had to work in an awkward position. The powerful saw caught on the material and cut into his left hand.

His index finger had to be amputated above the knuckle.

Mr Hardy worked for the firm for two years. Unfortunately he was made redundant after business slowed down and now works as a delivery driver for Higher IQ Logistics.

Loss of finger still causes problems

He said he has learned to get used to the loss of his finger but still has problems doing little things like tying his laces and playing pool.

He added: “I was in a lot of pain when the accident happened. I have always worked with my hands and at first it was frustrating getting used to the loss of my finger.”

Following the accident Mr Hardy contacted his union, the GMB, who advised him to claim accident compensation. The GMB instructed its lawyers Thompsons Solicitors which settled the claim out of court. The company did not admit liability.

Simple health and safety procedures would have prevented this accident

Andy Worth from the GMB said: “Mr Hardy was asked to change tools by his director who had failed to think through the risks of that change. As a result our member has been through incredible pain, has had to learn to cope without a major finger.”

Peter Magee from Thompsons Solicitors added: “Up to the time of the accident Mr Hardy had always worked with his hands and adjusting to life without his finger has been difficult. Simple health and safety procedures would have prevented this accident.”