Worker awarded damages for back injury caused by lifting a ream of copy paper from unsafe and hard to access storage.
A Gold Coast worker was awarded $240,000 in damages for injuring her back whilst lifting a ream of copy paper at her work undertaking administrative duties with Tabcorp.
Tabcorp defended the claim arguing that it held no liability for the worker's injury as she was simply picking up a ream of copy paper weighing less than three kilograms. The Plaintiff's legal representatives argued that although the ream of paper was not heavy, it was the method of storage of the paper which contributed significantly to the worker's injury occurring. The paper was stored in a position next to the copier which made it awkward for the worker to access. Whilst having to twist to reach the stored ream of copy paper, the injury occurred.
We, The Personal Injury Lawyers argued that the system of storage was unsafe. The worker was limited in her employment as a consequence of the back injury and was struggling in her work as a carer because of the injury. The employer did not agree that it had been negligent in it's work systems and strenuously defended the claim.
In February 2011, in the District Court on the Gold Coast, His Honour Judge Wall found in favour of the worker, awarding damages in the sum of $240,000. His Honour's findings can be found at the following link Dank v Tabcorp Pty Ltd .
The employer appealed the decision to the Full Court. The Full Court upheld the decision of His Honour Judge Wall finding that the system of storage of the copy paper was unsafe. The Full Court's findings can be found at the following link Dank v Tabcorp, Appeal decision.
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