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Production Line Worker Calls For Improved Safety After Repetitive Strain Injury

Four-Figure Settlement For Man Suffering Chronic Back Pain


A Hebburn man suffering with chronic back pain as a result of repetitive activities in the workplace has called for employers to improve their assessments and safety measures after he received an undisclosed four-figure settlement following successful legal action by law firm Irwin Mitchell.

Anthony McCarthy, 26, first began to suffer with muscle pain in his mid to lower back in early 2012, with the intensity and severity of the pain increasing throughout his 11-hour shifts at HVR International Limited.

His role in the company’s metalisation room required Anthony to operate a mounted metalisation spray gun which rotated but allowed very little movement of his arm. He was required to load, spray and store a minimum of 100 discs per hour.

In March 2013 Anthony continued to suffer severe back pain and he underwent an occupational health risk assessment that recommended he should not work for longer than four hours continuously.

However, HVR International Limited continued to assign Anthony six-hour shifts in the metalisation room until November 2013.

As a result of the repetitive work Anthony continues to suffer sharp, stabbing pains in his back and struggles with movement due to tightness across his back.

He instructed specialist workplace injury lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate his injuries and the measures put in place by his employers to improve his working environment.

The law firm has now secured him an undisclosed four-figure out-of-court settlement, after HVR International Limited admitted liability for his injuries.

The funds will be used to ensure Anthony, who has been diagnosed with a repetitive strain injury to his back as a result of his employment, is able to access the best possible treatment and rehabilitation to ensure he continues his recovery.

Alison Gregory, an expert workplace injury lawyer at Irwin Mitchell, representing Anthony, said:

Expert Opinion
“Repetitive strain injuries are a serious issue and should not be taken lightly by workers or employers. These are often painful injuries which can have a major and devastating impact on an individual’s life and can be difficult to treat.

“Sadly Anthony suffered a painful back injury as a result of his work and he now suffers with constant pain and has been unable to return to the same type of work. I hope this case highlights to all employers the importance of having the appropriate safety measure in place which can go some way to preventing injury and illness through carrying out repetitive tasks.

“We are delighted to have secured Anthony a settlement for his injuries from his employers that will help him access the help and support he needs to treat his injuries.”
Alison Gregory, Legal Executive - Associate

Anthony, who has since returned to the company in a different role, said: “The injuries I suffered as a result of my work seemed quite minor at first but over time the pain got harder and harder to manage.

“I have been left with excruciating and almost constant back pain as a result of my job and I am delighted that I have now received a settlement that I can use to get treatment that will help to reduce the pain I suffer on a daily basis.

“I can only hope my case acts as a reminder to employers to take safety seriously and to ensure everything possible is done to prevent workers suffering these types of injuries, as they can have a massive impact on people’s lives.”

If you or a loved one has suffered from repetitive strain injuries, such as bursitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, ulnar neuropathy and vibration white finger caused by conditions at work, our solicitors could help you claim compensation. See our Industrial Disease Claims page for more information.