Fall From Cherry Picker – Lucky To Be Alive And Walking

Cherry Picker fall - Negligence Claim

Our client worked as a boilermaker. He worked long hours, usually doing a night shift working up to 80 hours per week. On one occasion, he was sent by his labour hire company to a host employer to install cleats and purlins in a roof structure. This work had to be carried out overnight. Having been given directions from his host employer, he and a fellow workmate had attempted to carry out the job. Using a cherry picker and working at heights, they had maneuvered the cherry picker and attempted to carry out the work. After numerous attempts, they reported to their boss that they just couldn’t get in close enough to carry out the work.

Eventually, having performed the other cleat and purlin replacement work, the boss again directed our client and his workmate to carry out this last piece of the installation. Protests were met with “it must be done”, “the roof is to be replaced tomorrow”. So once again, the men attempted to do the work. One man was stationed on the ground, the other was in the cherry picker attempting the installation. Our client, having maneuvered the basket of the cherry picker as close as possible to where the work had to be done, couldn’t quite reach as his lanyard which was attached to a harness he was wearing wasn’t long enough. Instinctively, he detached his lanyard and lent out to do the installation. Unfortunately, he overreached and fell out of the cherry picker basket to the concrete floor below, a distance of over five metres.

In the accident, our client suffered very serious injuries to his neck, back and chest. He was rushed to hospital by ambulance and underwent urgent spinal surgery. His specialist was able to perform a spinal fusion with screws and plate. He also needed bone grafting and was then placed in a special halo and neck brace which had to be worn for several months. Our client was extremely lucky to be alive and incredibly fortunate to be able to walk. Unfortunately, his life following this accident would never be the same again.

Over the next two years, he underwent a large amount of rehabilitation. This included intensive physiotherapy, massage, exercise programmes and psychological counselling. He has been left with a broken body which is in constant pain. His neck, back, arms and chest are all causing him ongoing permanent problems. He can’t sleep. He is depressed. His ability to play with and care for his young children has been curtailed. Working around the home doing repairs, mowing the lawn, helping his wife with making the beds and hoovering the floor are all jobs that are now too much for him to do.

Our client was a keen sportsman who had played competitive rugby. He was a keen golfer and fisherman. He loved to socialise with family and friends. Unfortunately, he has become socially withdrawn. Fortunately he has had the love and support of his wife and children who have continued to give him the care that he needs.


Being a relatively young man with a young family and wife to care for and support, he turned to the experts in negligence claims here at Taylor & Scott for advice.

Simon Meigan, Partner and Accredited Specialist in Personal Injury, met with and advised our client. Simon advised that his client did have claims against his employer and against the host employer who was in direct control of the job that he had been working on. Having received instructions to act on a no-win/no-pay basis, Simon set about investigating the facts and circumstances of the accident and gathering medical evidence to determine the full extent of the injuries and disabilities that were affecting his client. Ultimately, Simon launched a damages claim for negligence in the Supreme Court of NSW.

Because of the severity of the injuries and the long time needed to determine the full impact of the injuries, the case had to be delayed until a clear prognosis could be obtained from the medical and rehabilitation experts who were treating Simon’s client.

Eventually, the experts were able to provide Simon and his client with a clear prognosis of what the future held for him, both from a medical point of view and from an employment point of view. Finally, the case was ready to proceed to a hearing. Simon was able to provide clear advice as to what his client could expect to receive in monetary terms.


We are very pleased to report that Simon secured a very large monetary settlement for his client. The money received has secured the financial future of Simon’s client and his family. Commenting on the case, Simon said that his client’s case “was complex because of the allegations of contributory negligence”. Simon had to ensure that he had expert evidence to counter the assertions made by the defendants that the accident was caused by his client’s contributory negligence. Simon further commented, “Using all of my experience and making sure I had expert witnesses with knowledge of the practices in the building industry, ensured that I was able to counter the assertions made by the defendants of contributory negligence and secure a very large settlement for my client”.


If you or someone you know is injured at work, even if others say it was your own fault, you may have a negligence claim against your employer or others who may have been responsible for your safety. You are welcome to contact the expert team of compensation and negligence lawyers here at Taylor & Scott. We offer a free case assessment in every case. We will very carefully examine all the facts and circumstances of your case and provide you with considered advice. If we act for you it will be on a no-win/no-pay basis, meaning you do not pay Taylor & Scott any costs whatsoever unless and until you win your case.

Even if other lawyers have told you that you can’t win, you are still welcome to contact our team for advice. We have over 100 years of experience in acting for injured workers. We will do everything we can to ensure that you receive maximum compensation for your injuries and disabilities.  

Please contact us by phoning 1800 600 664 or email us at info@tayscott.com.au.    

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