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Toddler’s Finger Severed After Hand Gets Trapped In Doctor Surgery Door

Public Liability Experts Call For More Safety Measures To Be Implemented To Prevent Injuries


The mother of a three-year-old boy who was left with the tip of his finger hanging by a thread when his hand got caught in a closing door is calling for better safety measures to be implemented in public places to stop similar incidents from happening.

Toddler Alexander Philip, from Northwood in Middlesex, put his hand in the hinge side of the door at the Mountwood Doctors Surgery which he was visiting with his mum Carolyn and 18-month-old brother William last month.

The doctor shut the door without realising Alexander’s hand was there, partially severing his finger and leaving the toddler screaming in agony with blood pouring from his hand.  He required plastic surgery to try and repair the damage but it is not yet known whether he will fully recover.

Alexander has been left traumatised by the incident and his mum is now joining calls from public liability experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell, who are representing her, for correct safety measures to be put in place on doors in public places.

This follows figures released by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) which found 30,000 children trap and seriously crush their fingers in doors every year.

Alicia Townsend, a public liability expert at Irwin Mitchell, said: “These accidents can be entirely avoidable if the correct preventative safety measures are in place and this makes the figures found by the ROSPA all the more shocking.

“Door hinges can be fitted with protective strips and finger guarding devices to prevent little ones being able to put their fingers in, and door stops will prevent any sudden shutting.

“Alexander and his mother Carolyn are still in shock about what happened and we hope the case shows the importance of safety measures being put in place.”

Carolyn said following the incident the GP refused to call an ambulance despite her pleading with him to do so.  She and her husband then drove him to the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford where he was admitted and underwent surgery to re-attach the part-severed finger the following day.

Carolyn, a 38 year old mother and housewife said: “Alexander has been traumatised and is really jumpy and frightened and he is not his usual self. I’ve found him crying uncontrollably in the middle of the night and there’s nothing I can do to settle him sometimes.

“I’ll never forget the amount of blood the injury caused and I was panicking he would lose his finger completely because I couldn’t really see how bad the injury was.

“We still don’t know if there is any permanent damage, he needs to go back to the hospital in a couple of weeks.

“Buildings and places that regularly have children visiting them must do all they can to protect them around doors. I am shocked by the number of serious injuries that are caused by trapped fingers, particularly when they can be so easily prevented.”

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident in a public place, our personal injury solicitors could help you claim compensation. Visit our Accidents In Public Places Claims page for more information.