Were the mechanic’s injuries caused by the negligence of the company that employed him? Which case won?
Mechanic injured while repairing loader
A light vehicle mechanic employed by a service company was working as an independent contractor for a landscaping and garden supply company to service bulldozers, excavators, forklifts, trucks and wheel loaders across their 15 work sites.
In early 2007, the mechanic was directed to service a Volvo wheel loader that was owned and operated by the landscaping company. The machine had been damaged and the mechanic was unable to realign and fasten the bolts of the “bash plate” on one side. As a short-term solution, the bash plate was welded on so that the loader could be quickly put back into operation.
Later in 2007 the mechanic was again directed to service the wheel loader. While he was attempting to remove the bash plate, which weighed approximately 200 kilograms, it fell onto the ground, crushing his right arm.
Mechanic brings action in negligence against company
The mechanic brought an action in negligence against the landscaping company, alleging amongst other things that it had failed to provide a safe place of work and permitted him to work on a loader which it knew to be defective.
The landscaping company brought a cross claim against the service company that employed the mechanic for breach of contract, indemnity and/or contribution.
It was for the court to determine whether the mechanic was entitled to compensation for his injuries and, if so, who should pay.