A welder who has been off work for almost two years after he fractured his skull in a workplace accident has received a substantial sum in compensation.

The 30-year-old, from Chepstow in Monmouthshire was knocked unconscious and suffered memory loss following the accident while working for Severn Engineering Company in July 2007. 

He was fitting a handrail at a new computer science centre in the University of Wales in Aberystwyth when he was hit on the head by a metal handrail post which fell from the top of the staircase 15ft above him.

The accident left him with a fractured skull, broken nose and soft tissue injuries to his neck and spine. He was kept in hospital for nine days and is receiving therapy to help his memory loss.

Thompsons Solicitors made Personal Injury Compensation Claim

Following the accident he contacted his union the GMB which instructed its lawyers Thompsons Solicitors to pursue a personal injury claim for compensation.

Severn Engineering Company admitted liability and settled the claim out of court.

The client said he wanted to ensure that health and safety practices at the plant were reviewed to avoid a similar accident happening again.

He said: “As a welder I am used to working in dangerous conditions so I couldn’t believe I was so badly injured while doing what I would call a simple and safe job. It just shows you how easily accidents can happen if there is a slip in health and safety standards.

“I have now been off work for almost two years. I hope to return soon but this accident has cost me those years.”

Basic health and safety rules must be followed when working on construction sites

Nick Hughes, legal officer at the GMB added: “This accident could have been avoided had this metal post been stored safely. Basic health and safety rules must be followed when working on construction sites where the simplest mistake can lead to life threatening accidents.”

Eamonn McDonough from Thompsons Solicitors in Cardiff added: “This accident shows just how important it is to follow good health and safety practice at all times. Our client has been off work sick for almost two years, not to mention the effects it has had on his home life. It is only right he is compensated for his employer’s negligence.”