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Young Farmer Injured in Fall From Ladder Achieves Compensation Settlement

Health and safety breaches lead to accidents, almost as night follows day. In a tragic case on point, a young man who was catastrophically injured when he fell from a ladder on his family farm secured more than £6 million in compensation.

The 21-year-old was alone on the farm and working on maintaining a retaining wall when he fell. He was known to suffer from epilepsy and may have had a seizure whilst standing on the ladder. The ground was muddy and uneven, and no scaffolding or other equipment was available to afford him safe access to the top of the wall.

He was found unconscious several hours later, having suffered spinal injuries that have left him tetraplegic and confined to a wheelchair for life. Head injuries, although at first considered minor, have led to erratic and impulsive behaviour, to the point where he has been assessed as incapable of managing his own affairs.

After proceedings were launched, the family farming partnership admitted primary liability for the accident and its insurers agreed to settle his claim for a lump sum of just over £6.6 million. In approving the compromise, the High Court noted that, on an isolated family farm, compliance with health and safety rules may not have been at the forefront of anyone's mind.

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