A man who was seriously injured in a workplace fall has secured a six-figure compensation payment with the help of Thompsons Solicitors and his union, the Prison Officers Association (POA).

The 48 year old ex-prison officer was on guard dog patrol at a prison when he slipped on a stretch of path which had not been gritted, fracturing his right foot.

His two decade-long career was cut short after complications following his accident saw him medically retired from the prison service. The once-active dog handler has also been told by doctors that he is at a 25% risk of needing an amputation in future.

Prior to the accident, the man was a keen cyclist, football player, cricketer and golf-lover. He now requires considerable care from his family.

Working with the POA, Thompsons brought a case for damages against his employers, the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) which was heard this week at the London High Court. On 07 October, the Court ruled in favour of the claimant and ordered the MoJ to pay almost £500,000 in compensation to ensure the injured man’s future care needs can be met.

“It is a bitter blow to suffer an injury that not only ended my career, but that was also entirely preventable,” said the POA member.

“The MoJ has been shown to be responsible for the part they played in my injury and has, I hope, taken the point that neglecting the health and safety of prisoners and prison officers comes with a heavy price.

“This injury has cost me my career, my mobility and all of my sporting passions. I’m in constant pain and have been relying on the care and support of my wonderful wife and son to get by. It is a small consolation to know that the funds are now available to take on additional support and that further compensation may be available if the worst happens and any future amputation is unsuccessful. I was extremely grateful for the support and guidance from the POA, both locally and nationally and Thompsons solicitors, who were first class. This proved my membership of the POA was vital.”

Glyn Travis from the POA said: “Yet again the MoJ has carelessly thrown both a career and public money down the drain. Our member was an active and dedicated member of the prison service whose career was cruelly cut short by an accident that was entirely avoidable. We were proud to support him in his case and are pleased that the Court has ruled in his favour.

“With staffing levels stretched and the prison population growing, the UK prison service has lost a veteran with over 20 years of experience at a time when experienced prison officers are needed the most.”

Christalla Christodoulidou, a personal injury expert from Thompsons Solicitors said: "The compensation will mean that both our client and his family can get the care and support to meet his present and future needs.

“Unbelievably the Prison Service refused to discuss a settlement of this case, despite our repeated requests for them to do so. Their first offer came at 4pm on the day before trial and was inadequate. Their failure to deal with the case properly will have wasted more public time and money.

"We succeeded in getting the six figure settlement on the client's behalf that we were determined to get, as well as securing the possibility of future compensation should he later require an amputation.

"Ice slips can often be trivialised by employers yet here we see the full impact such an accident can have on an individual, their career and their loved ones.”