Fishing accident claim after accident ends career

Fishing boat at sea

Our client was working on a fishing boat in the North Sea when the accident happened.

He and his colleagues were hauling in the net, and it was tight, as if it was snagged. There was no other way to free the net so he followed standard procedure and put out his hand to take in a slack chain. He got about a foot before his hand got caught in the gear mechanism when the skipper hauled the clump further in.

Fishing accident means he can’t return to work

Our client was airlifted to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary where his hand was x-rayed. It was found he had a badly broken finger which was also out of the joint.  He had to have an operation where he had two pins put in his ring finger on his right hand.

“I couldn’t do anything straight after the accident. My hand has been left crooked and I still get pain at times. I was off work for a whole year and I couldn’t do that job anymore. I’ve now had to move to something else – after over 40 years working as a fisherman.”

Fishing accident claim with Digby Brown

Digby Brown’s personal injury lawyers in Aberdeen are experienced in helping people who are injured after a fishing accident. Our lawyers believed his employer was negligent and raised a claim for compensation against his employer.

“After seeing an advert on TV, I decided to get in touch. They sorted everything out and the service was really good.”

Accident could have been prevented – but employers refuse to admit fault

Our lawyers argued that the employer failed to reduce the risk of injury to their employees. They did not prepare risk assessments and comply with Regulation 7 of the Merchant Shipping and Fishing Vessels (Health and Safety at Work) Regulations 1997.

They should have devised and maintained a reasonably safe system of work and they knew, or ought to have known, that lifting the clump while our client was standing on the rail and reaching over to free the net presented a risk of injury.

If these precautions had been in place, the fishing accident could have been prevented.

Securing the right compensation for fishing accident

Although our client’s employer refused to admit fault, his insurers made an offer of £21,000 which our client initially wanted to accept. After listening to advice from our personal injury lawyers, he then rejected the offer. 

The insurers then upped their offer to £30,000 however our lawyers knew this was not a fair offer and recommended that he reject the offer. In the end, our client was awarded £37,500 in compensation for his life-changing injuries.

“I was going to accept the first two offers as I was worried I wouldn’t end up with anything. But I listened to Digby Brown’s advice as they knew what they were doing, and I’m really pleased with the compensation.”