Pallet Trucks UK has urged businesses to prioritise worker safety after a dreadful accident caused a pallet to fall on a freight worker, leaving him with devastating spinal injuries and robbing him of his ability to walk.
Andrew Potts, 53, was working as a freight checker for United Pallet Network in Lichfield when the pallet holding glass fell off a curtain-sided lorry and crushed him. This came after Andrew had previously attempted to stabilize the pallets using a forklift truck a few moments earlier.
Previously a fully able man, Mr Potts has now been reduced to having to use a mobility scooter to travel more than a few feet and is completely reliant on his wife for household activities such as cooking and cleaning.
Phil Chesworth, Pallet Trucks UK Managing Director, said: “This is a really catastrophic injury which has robbed an unfortunate worker of his freedom. Going from being a fully able-bodied person to having to use a mobility scooter is devastating for both the victim and his family.
“The worst part about this injury is that it could’ve been avoided; it sounds like the pallet was in a precarious position to start with which is unacceptable in any case, but made even worse by the fact that a lack of attention to safety has cost a man his independence.”
As well as causing excruciating spinal fractures, Mr Potts suffered multiple broken bones and damaged teeth from the accident. He is now suing the owners of the lorry, Lescost Transport Ltd, for damages in excess of £200,000.
Mr Pott’s lawyers state that’s he’s been badly psychologically affected by the accident, and suffers from depression and anxiety as a result of being unable to look after himself and perform simple actions such as climbing stairs.
Phil added: “Some pallets are extremely heavy and it isn’t surprising how severe Mr Pott’s injuries are if the pallet fell on him from height, especially if it was holding a product on top of it as well.”
Pallet Trucks UK stocks a huge array of manual handling equipment used by freight workers and other materials handling professionals, including pallet trucks, moving skates, lift tables, forklift fork extensions, drum loaders and more.