UK solicitor explains how to claim compensation if you have suffered injury to your gracilis muscle in your thigh due to heavy lifting at work together with how to calculate the amount of compensation a thigh injury claim is worth.
Work Accident Victim Question
I am a labourer working in the construction industry and I was asked to move a heavy steel lintel by my supervisor. The lintel weighed approximately 150kg – I explained that this was heavy for me to move by myself, but the supervisor indicated as the construction had been delayed by bad weather we were behind schedule so we all had to pitch together to get things moving faster.
I attempted to lift the weight using my legs – I did this in an explosive move to attempt to pick it from the ground and twist it onto my shoulder. As I did so I felt my inner thigh muscle pop and I dropped the weight in agony.
I was told by my supervisor to go to hospital as he could see that I was in pain – so a taxi was called.
At hospital I was examined and informed that I had torn my inner thigh muscle – I was told that this muscle was called the gracilis muscle. I have since seen my GP and been signed off work for 4 weeks as I have to keep my leg elevated and be non-weight bearing.
I contacted my site manager the following day and was informed the injury was put into the accident book and I am aware that my supervisor no longer allows one labourer to pick the 150kg lintels by themselves – several workers or a pallet truck are used to pick and manoeuvre the steel lintels.
Can I claim for the injury to my gracilis muscle and if so how much is my claim likely to be worth?
UK Work Accident Solicitor Response
Your thigh is made up of primarily three muscle groups – the quadriceps muscles (muscles at the front of your thigh), the hamstrings (muscles at the back of your thigh) and the adductor muscles (muscles at the side of your thigh).
The gracilis muscle (Musculus Gracilis) is an adductor muscle and functions to help close your legs and cross your thighs hence its historical etymological derivative once known as the protector of a lady’s virginity (I am informed in a recent discussion with some medics).
The gracilis muscle is prone to strains and tears if a sharp powerful twisting movement is made of your leg, such as the explosive movement you have described in attempting to lift the heavy lintel at work. The muscle is stretched beyond its limit causing the fibres in the muscle to tear. This occurs most commonly at the point where the muscle joins a tendon (the tough connective tissue joining muscles to bones).
The weight you describe of 150kg is excessive for one employee to move by himself and as such your employer can be found to have breached the Manual Handling Regulations, which sets out the safe approach to lifting, lowering and carrying of loads (also the pushing and pulling weights).
Although there are no absolute weights set out in the Manual Handling regulations – the lifting of 150kg by one employee will be considered excessive and an employer should avoid this risk through mechanisation of the lifting process or at the very least the safe use of several employees if mechanisation is not possible.
The amount of compensation you can claim for a torn gracillis muscle will depend upon the exact nature of the tear and the effect it has on your long-term ability to work.
A solicitor will instruct a medical expert to complete a report setting out the exact nature of the gracilis muscle tear with a prognosis as to how long you can expect to recover from the injury and whether you will be left with a permanent risk of future strains and tears.
Once this medical report is obtained your solicitor will set out how much you can claim for pain and suffering together with the amounts you can claim for other financial losses – such as lost income, medical expenses, etc.
If you wish to proceed with making a claim for your gracilis muscle tear or to speak to me in person about your accident click work accident gracilis muscle tear / strain claim.