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Monthly Archives: February 2015

Fairground ride injuries

Fairgrounds are full of machinery that can cause significant injury or even be fatal.  Whilst no one wants to spoil anyone’s fun or enjoyment of a day out with unnecessary “elf and safety” (health and safety as some detractors like to say) a serious accident would certainly spoil the fun and could have long term consequences.  The owners and managers must take reasonable steps to have machinery that is fit for its purpose to begin with and then to maintain that equipment so that it provides a safe environment for visitors.  In a recent case in Twin Lakes Park a young boy suffered a nasty broken leg when his shoelace became tangled on a protruding bolt which formed part of the spinning parts of a ride, as the barrel spun his leg was twisted causing the injury.

“BB & B Leisure Parks Ltd, which owns Twin Lakes, had tried to cover up the bolt head by wrapping agricultural self-adhesive tape around the pole but this was prone to wearing through by rubbing against people’s shoes as they used the ride.

Although daily checks on its condition were in place it could wear through very quickly as it was too soft and flexible.”

BB & B Leisure pleaded guilty to breaches of health and safety legislation.  For more click here.

If you or a friend or loved one has been injured in a fairground accident you may be entitled to claim.  For friendly expert advice contact Nick at Sentinels Solicitors on the above number or by using the contact form.  All work is on a no win no fee basis.

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Bakery company and directors plead guilty for allowing workers to be baked alive

Leicester Crown Court heard that in 1998 two maintenance engineers had been sent in to carry out repairs to an oven that had only 2 hours earlier had been baking bread at 260 degrees. Apparently the oven should have been left for at least 12 hours to cool and access could have been obtained by removing some of the sides to the machine but the oven down time could cost over £1,000 per hour.  The men entered the oven through the same route the bread takes.  They died from their burns. Fresha Bakeries Ltd and Harvestime Ltd both part of the William Price Group each pleaded guilty to failing to provide a safe system of work and 2 directors and the chief engineer also pleaded guilty to similar charges.  Further details here…

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Injured or killed by reversing and turning lorries

Large vehicles should take appropriate care when reversing and serious injury or death can result when they don’t as these examples illustrate, where on 2 separate occasions a dustbin lorry reversed into pedestrians causing fatal injuries.  The driver was guilty of causing death by dangerous driving in both cases.  The local council was fined £120,000 for its failings.

Cyclists are also at significant risk of injury by large vehicles turning left across their path.  As a cyclist myself I understand the risks and fears when being passed by large trucks and lorries who do not leave enough gap and the difficulties you face when passing a lorry turning left.

If you have been injured or a loved one killed by a reversing vehicle (or indeed any vehicle) you are entitled to claim compensation.  Call Nick or Vicky at Sentinels Solicitors Ltd for friendly expert advice.  We are a small practice with experienced solicitors and will achieve the best results for your claim.

All work is done on a no win no fee basis.

 

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Have a dispute but don’t want to go to court?

If you have a dispute and are either owed money, goods or services or to just put “things right” if you have had a poor service or product but don’t want to go to court with the uncertainty over how long it will take or how much it will cost, there are alternatives.

Sentinels Solicitors Ltd is a small company who can give you a friendly experienced service whether to cast an eye over some paperwork or claim and give you a quick idea of whether your claim has merit or to give more detailed advice on how to move your claim forward.

We can issue legal proceedings but there are often other ways of resolving out disputes and we tend to view “suing” as a last resort.

Setting out your claim or grievance clearly with evidence in support is usually the first step.  Some companies have a designated complaints process which should be followed first.  We can help you in these early negotiations.  The negotiations can be done in writing, on the telephone or at a meeting.

If this leads to a dead end then there is often an Ombudsman who will look at a complaint and can make a legally binding decision.  For example the Financial Ombudsman Service is available for all disputes with a financial institution.  The Ombudsman if not necessarily bound by the strict rules of law that courts have to follow and can therefore make a decision which is based on fairness even if a court would come to a different decision if it heard the same case.

You could mediate with the help of a mediator who is an independent person who hears both sides of the argument and suggests ways of resolving the dispute.  If the parties can agree how to move forward they can draw up a written agreement resolving the dispute and maybe even adding in other terms of agreement to maintain business relationships.  The new agreement would then be contractually binding.  Businesses can often keep relationships going that would otherwise have come to an end if the parties had gone to court to assert their “rights”.  They are all private and confidential even if you do not manage to reach an agreed settlement.

Nick at Sentinels Solicitors can advise you on whether mediation is appropriate and assist you in preparing and attending a mediation.

For friendly expert advice call 01925 759510.

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Disputes with your bank or insurance company

If you have a disagreement with your bank or insurance company you should first contact that bank or insurance company setting out your complaint.  They should have a process for dealing with customer complaints.  This could be on their website or in there terms and conditions (usually near the end) which should be on their paperwork or in an email or on their website.

Examples of disagreements –

Your bank may have charged you penalties or other fees which you disagree with and which are not justified under the terms of your agreement with the bank;

Your insurance company might be refusing to pay out on a claim;

Your bank may have misused funds in your account so that you might have gone overdrawn or released goods as part of a sale transactions but the money is then removed leaving you without the goods sold or the money intended to pay for them.  For example Barclays Bank have recently agreed to reimburse a jeweller £150,000, the jeweller had sold diamonds worth £250,000 but before handing over the goods had sensibly asked his bank (Barclays) to confirm when it had the funds.  Barclays duly confirmed to their client that it had the funds in his account but then the buyer’s bank (HSBC) suspected fraud on the part of their customer and asked for the return of their money.  Barclays returned the £250,000 but the jeweller had already released £150,000 of the diamonds and the buyer had absconded with them.  The jeweller sued Barclays and whilst it initially denied any liability it eventually admitted it had to reimburse the jeweller the £150,000. See link

Your claim might not be worth £150,000 or involve diamonds but it is likely to still be important to you.  Just because you are a small or medium sized business or an individual does not mean you cannot take on the big banks or insurance companies.  We at Sentinels will fight your corner and seek to recover what you are owed.

You do not have to begin lengthy court processes you can take your complaint to the Financial Ombudsman or Pensions Ombudsman and their decision is legally binding on the bank or insurance company.

It may not be an insurance company but a company who had sold you goods or services on credit and it then failing to deliver those goods or services.

Sentinels Solicitors Ltd aims to help individuals and small and medium sized businesses recover what they are owed in an quick and costs effective way.  Call Nick on 01925 759 510.

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Noise Induced Hearing Loss in the Food and Drink Industry

Exposure to noise at work can cause irreversible hearing damage. It is one of the commonest health problems and can be difficult to detect as the effects build up gradually over time.

Lots of food and drink industries have processes which emit high noise levels which can damage your hearing.

This could be in the bakery, dairy, confectionery or meat industries or canning factories and drinks industries.

The following are examples of processes that have been particularly associated with high noise levels within the food and drink industry.

  1. Glass bottling lines
  2. Product impact on hoppers
  3. Wrapping, cutting wrap, bagging etc
  4. Bowl choppers
  5. Pneumatic noise and compressed air
  6. Milling operations
  7. Saws/cutting machinery
  8. Blast chillers/freezers
  9. Packaging machinery
  10. Wheeled trolleys/racks

If you have problems hearing or suffer from ringing or “whooshing” in your ears (which could be tinnitus) and work or have worked in noisy jobs call Nick or Vicky at Sentinels for free expert advice 01925 759 510.

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Directors: Victoria Jane Carr LLB (Hons). Nicholas John Bettridge LLB (Hons).
Registered Office: 792 Wilmslow Road, Didsbury, Manchester, M20 6UG
Sentinels Solicitors Limited is a company registered in England & Wales. Registered Number 5984329
This company is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. SRA Number 450386

This website is designed for educational and informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional advice. Changes may occur which affect the accuracy of the information presented. The authors of this website shall not be liable for any damages caused as a result of the use of this information.

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