Armed Forces Negligence Claims
If you are injured while serving in the armed forces you could be able to make a claim for compensation for a variety of reasons, but most commonly if you have been injured and it wasn’t your fault. When joining up to serve, most people will appreciate that they are putting themselves at risk of injury from a perceived enemy, but they probably don’t expect to be injured while training to deal with that enemy. These injuries can come from a range of issues such as:
Defective Equipment – whether you’re being trained to use specific equipment, or actively operating it during combat, the last thing you should expect is to be let down or injured by the equipment you are provided with to keep you safe. It might be that your gun explodes while you are discharging it, your parachute fails to open in mid-air, or your vehicle breaks down leaving you in a perilous situation. In some cases it could be that personal protective equipment such as hearing protection or breathing equipment fails to adequately protect you from danger. In any event, defective equipment should never be provided – procedures should be in place to ensure that all equipment is properly maintained and suitable for the purpose for which it is provided.
Cold Injuries – warfare can take place in any kind of geographical location and so training in cold weather situations is crucial for a large number of troops. Of course suitable clothing and equipment should be provided, but the capacity of senior officers to understand the risks of operating in cold temperatures is also paramount. In some cases such as when suffering from frostbite, proper training in how to deal with it can avoid irreversible damage that can cause serious problems with ongoing service. Similarly with hypothermia – if colleagues and senior officers are properly trained with how to care for someone suffering from the cold, the sufferer’s prospects are improved significantly.
Heat Injuries – heat can be just as dangerous as cold both in terms of direct injuries such as burns, but also in dealing with working in hot environments. Just performing day-to-day activities can become a strain in a hot or humid environment, but activities such as carrying heavy packs for long distances can prove fatal if early signs of heat exhaustion or sun-stroke are not acted upon appropriately. The Joint Service Publication JSP539 provides guidance for the prevention of heat illness and cold injury in the UK armed forces, but some senior officers are not familiar with the guidelines, or in some cases choose to ignore them in order to get the most out of their troops, sometimes with fatal consequences.
Medical negligence – as with civilian medical negligence, this can occur when medical professionals fail to act according to guidelines laid down for them to follow. This could manifest itself as a missed diagnosis, misdiagnosis, or a failure to properly treat a medical condition or injury. Military doctors and nurses are just as prone to making mistakes as civilians, but in some cases the consequences can be even more dire. While some particularly valiant troops might postpone visiting a doctor for reasons of pride, commanders have a responsibility to pick up on any illnesses or injuries their personnel may be suffering from and ensure that suitable medical treatment is put in place. In some cases failure to respond accordingly to a medical issue can result in personnel being sent on active duty when they are not really fit enough to take part. This can result in further injury to themselves, but also increases the risk of danger to those serving alongside them, and even those whom they are in place to protect.
Contact us today for free, no obligation advice regarding your Armed Forces claim – either by calling us free on 0800 122 3036, or by requesting a free call back, whereby one of our team will contact you at a time of your choosing to discuss your situation. When you contact us you are under no obligation to continue with the case unless you wish to do so.
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Armed Forces Compensation Claims
Free Legal Advice
If you are unsure whether you can claim compensation for a personal injury sustained in the armed forces, then call our personal injury claims team for free for no obligation advice on making a claim. They will ask you some simple questions about your condition, talk to you about what’s happened and can tell you if you have a viable claim for compensation or not.
Call us 24/7 on 0800 122 3036.
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