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Firefighter secures compensation after ladder breakage destroys his arms

Posted in: Workplace Injuries 

A firefighter who was forced to medically retire after an incident during a training exercise has been awarded a six-figure compensation package. Michael Hollings suffered the life-changing injury at Ilkley Fire Station when the ladder he was on cracked and fell to the ground, leaving him suspended at six inches above the floor. He suffered a severe fracture and two dislocated elbows and forearms in the accident. He also fractured his right food and suffered serious concussion.

Medically retire

Mr Hollings had been a firefighter for eight years prior to the accident. Following the incident, he had to undergo two major operations on his arms and wear a metal brace for several months. The severity of the injuries meant him having to medically retire from his position with the West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) and his second job as a HGV driver.

Since the accident, Mr Hollings has continued to have physiotherapy twice-weekly and is due to have a spinal cord stimulator fitted. The compensation package he received will allow him to purchase an automatic car and access the range of rehabilitation services he requires.

Mr Hollings, a member of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU), said: “It was a case of learning to adapt and cope. My doctors tell me that I’ll never recover the full range of motion in my arms and I’ve had to put what I call my manual life on hold.

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