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Calling Last Orders On Pub Accidents And Injuries?

17th December 2013
Eighteen pubs were closing in Britain every week, it was reported in November 2012. With fewer premises, it would be no real surprise to learn that a survey of 1400 pubs conducted in the first 3 months of the year found a reduction, albeit small, of 2 per cent in reported accidents in public houses compared to same period in 2011.

Similarly, there was a 6 per cent drop in incidents of physical assault and a fewer number of ‘slips and trips’, down by 5 per cent at the same time in the previous year.

Accident claims and injury compensation for incidents taking place in pubs, clubs or other leisure venues have regularly occupied the in-trays of personal injury solicitors over the years.

The Liability law states that owners are responsible not only for any injuries that might take place within their premises but also for incidents taking place in the surrounding areas which they own, including the public thoroughfare in front of the pub, bar or club entrance.

So while the majority of public houses around Britain today are not owned by their landlords and the person in charge, is a tithed tenant or manager - and thus a brewery company employee - the overall management still have legal health and safety obligations to their staff and customers.

While bar stools, which suffer much wear and tear can be in danger of collapsing, most accidents occur as a result of spilt drinks and broken glass. Slips and trips on wet floors and stairs and in the WC areas are a constant hazard, including in some older premises, worn carpets or uneven floors. An uneven ground can typically also be found in an outside area reserved for smoking, a beer garden or the car park.

However, there are several other key safety risks that can cause serious injury to pub staff. Accidents which take place can involve the replacement of beer kegs and the severe risk of back injury, even muscle or tendon problems when pulling traditional beer taps.

Safety risks can lurk in the pub kitchen too with the potential of receiving injuries from cuts, bruises, burns and electrical faults.

Brewery employers have a duty to protect their employees from injury and are responsible for the proper maintenance of premises and fittings to ensure both the landlord and their staff can work in safety.