A GMB member who suffered multiple injuries in a 35ft fall from an unsecured ladder has received substantial compensation after help from the trade union.

The 26-year-old from Torrington, Devon, was lucky to survive when his ladder slipped and he fell from the third floor of a new build house onto a concrete floor. His injuries included a broken left wrist which had to be operated on, a broken front tooth, injuries to his heel and multiple cuts and grazes.

The self-employed dry liner subcontracted to work on a development of six houses by an Ilfracombe developer was injured due to the firm’s failure to fix the ladder properly.

He contacted the GMB for advice and it instructed Thompsons Solicitors to investigate a claim for compensation.

The developer admitted liability and settled the claim out of court.

Lucky to walk away from this accident

The GMB member said: “I know that I’m lucky to have been able to walk away from this accident with the injuries I received but they still have a big impact on my life. I needed three months off work and being self employed, if I’m not working, I’m not earning. This had a big impact on our finances. When I did return to work I had to ease myself back into it slowly.

“I still suffer from pain in my wrist and have to take painkillers everyday. I do my best to battle through so I can continue to earn.”

Steve Gibbons from the GMB said: “Falls from height are the number one cause of workplace deaths and this member could easily have become yet another of those statistics. A little planning by site managers is needed to make sure ladders are used safely to avoid this type of accident.”

Kevin Digby from Thompsons Solicitors added: “Simple and cheap measures could have avoided this accident, like securing the ladder to make sure it wouldn’t slip. Our client is able to continue to work but must endure pain in his wrist on a daily basis. His agony could easily have been avoided had this developer paid more care to its health and safety responsibilities.”