A Wiltshire man received compensation of £50,000 when he was struck on the leg by a coupling hub.

Mr Earney, aged 53, was employed as a mechanical craft worker for Blue Circle Industries plc at their factory premises in Westbury, Wiltshire. He was asked to move a damaged coupling hub from the gearbox on the cement mill. He used a hydraulic jack as instructed by his employer, to get to the correct pressure.

Unfortunately, unknown to Mr Earney, the locking nut securing the hub had been undone too far. As a result, and under pressure from the hydraulic jack, the hub suddenly shot forward at great speed directly towards him. The hub, which weighed in excess of one tonne, struck him with force on his right leg.

Major Injury to Leg

Mr Earney explained: “I suffered a major injury to my right leg. I had a compound fracture which needed prolonged medical treatment. I was not able to work at all for a month and even when I returned to work I was only able to work for a couple of hours a day to start off with, carrying out light duties. In the end, I had to change my job because of my injuries.”

Andy Frampton from leading union, UNITE, said: “This case highlights the duties on employers to provide safe equipment at work and the need to ensure that other work colleagues are properly trained.”

Dan Poet from Thompsons Solicitors who represented Mr Earney said: “Mr Earney suffered from a distressing and serious injury as a result of his employment, as a result of which he is restricted on the job market in the future.”