Personal Injury – Negligence
Andrew Swain -V- Geoffrey Osborne Ltd – PJ Brown Ltd (2010)
Liability for personal injury sustained on a building site. Responsibility of contractor and subcontractor to a visitor
A lorry driver slipped on mud on a footway on a building site due to a sub contractor’s lack of site safety checks. The lorry driver sustained injuries to his ankle as a result of the slip and fall.
As the driver was also obligated to take care for his own safety and he was therefore found to be 25% responsible for the accident.
- On the evidence, the lorry driver’s injuries were sustained in the manner he stated, by slipping on a muddy surface
- The accident arose from the failure of safety checks and systems at the building site to keep footways clear of mud
- The primary safety check failure was due to not cleaning lorries’ wheels before leaving the site
- The contractor discharged his responsibilities by using the sub contractor to implement the safety measures
- The sub contractor was primarily responsible for relaxing safety checks on site and due to them having the day to day running of the site
- The contractor has to maintain some responsibility though for not making sure the safety checks were being implemented
- The lorry driver acknowledged to knowing that the surface was muddy, as it was a very wet morning
- The lorry driver had to take some responsibility for the fact that he should have walked slower and more carefully on site and his compensation were accordingly reduced by 25%