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Mr Shearer, awarded £2,000 following an injury sustained while working

Mr Shearer, a self-employed electrical contractor, was working in the pitch of a roof at a large plastics factory when he was overcome by toxic smoke and fumes from a machinery fire below him. It took him several minutes to get down from the roof, by which time he had inhaled large amounts of toxic gas and he had to be carried outside to safety.

Immediately after the accident Gary found it hard to breathe, suffered from a burning throat and severe headache, had an extremely high temperature and felt sick. The incident led to him spending three days in hospital and having to take two weeks off work. In total it took him two months to fully recover.

Not sure if he had a valid claim Mr Shearer didn’t at first pursue it, but eventually contacted First4Lawyers almost three years after the incident when a friend advised him he should claim as the company he had been working for had breached several health and safety regulations.

The machinery was old and faulty and had no safety notices displayed and although there were extractor fans built into the roof, they were faulty and not functioning. These factors, combined with the machinery not being switched off as soon as the fire started and no doors or windows being opened, resulted in both injury and a loss of earnings for Gary.


Mr Shearer tried several companies before calling First4lawyers, but all advised him that he was too close to the claims cut-off date, as it was just three weeks prior to the usual three-year limitation period. However, First4lawyers believed his claim was strong enough to resolve quickly and put him in touch with a solicitor that specialises in this type of claim.

Mr Shearer said: “The First4lawyers advisor I spoke to was really helpful and knowledgeable and put me in touch with a specialist solicitor straight away.

“The solicitor assigned to my case did an excellent job. He was extremely quick and efficient and pushed the case through successfully in a very short space of time to ensure success. In total it took just four months to settle.

“I was delighted with the service throughout the whole process and was awarded £2,000 for the injury I sustained and the loss of earnings it resulted in. I’d recommend that anyone who has had something similar happen to them to contact First4lawyers. They are fantastic at what they do and will work hard to assign you a solicitor who will work with you to get the compensation you’re entitled to.”

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