In Kennedy v Cordia (Services) LLP, K was a home carer. There had actually been extreme wintry conditions in Scotland for numerous weeks, with snow and ice lying on the ground. To get to a senior lady s home, K needed to use a sloping public footpath, which was covered with fresh snow overlying ice. It had actually not been gritted or salted. K was using flat boots with ridged soles. After taking a couple of steps, she slipped and fell, hurting her wrist. Cordia had actually carried out a threat assessment that year, however it did not expressly think about the danger of injury from slips and falls in severe weather condition or the possible provision of personal protective equipment such as non-slip attachments for footwear.
K declared a breach by Cordia of its duties under health and wellness at work policies and a breach of the common law responsibility to take affordable care for the safety of staff members. The Lord Ordinary, in Scotland, maintained K s claim in all respects. With regard to the breach of common law, it was found that in the face of an apparent and continuing threat, Cordia offered no safe footwear, there was no proof they inspected exactly what was being used, nor of any system of working or reporting in when personnel had to go out in the extreme weather condition and walk on snow and ice. The Inner House reversed the choice on the basis that the health and safety policies did not apply and there was no breach of the common law because the omission by Cordia was not something so obviously required that it would be negligent not to have actually done it.
That is because the whole point of a risk evaluation is to recognize whether the specific operation offers increase to any risk to safety and, if so, what is the extent of that risk, and what can and must be done to minimise or eliminate the risk. The duty to bring out a threat assessment is therefore essential in identifying exactly what safety measures a sensible company would have taken to satisfy his common law task.
This landmark judgment from the Supreme Court now suggests that any employer looking for to protect a personal injury claim should reveal that a danger evaluation, relevant to all the conditions in which a job is carried out, has actually been carried out and that its outcomes have actually been acted upon by taking ideal precautions to avoid injury.