Neglectful local authorities spark legal feeding frenzy

Personal injury news roundup: 7 days ended 23 Mth 2014:

The news this week was full of stories of how neglectful local authorities ended up creating a personal injury claims feeding frenzy at taxpayers’ expense!

You know it’s simply cause and effect: if you don’t keep your facilities in good repair, they could end up causing the types of injuries that personal injury solicitors dream about. Don’t believe me? How about the story of how a road in Pembrokeshire was in such bad condition that a pothole caused £10,000 in damage to cars in a single week!

It’s true – Pembrokeshire County Council has paid out more than £15,000 in personal injury compensation over the past two years due to the conditions of county roadways. £10,000 of that cost comes exclusively from one stretch of road where a monstrously huge pothole wrecked vehicles left and right for about a week before the council managed to get it repaired.

There’s something like 2,500km of roads that the council is responsible for, and I suppose it’s not unreasonable to think that one single local authority might be in a bit of a bind trying to keep all of them in good condition. But I also wonder if it would just have been less expensive for the council to fix the pothole immediately instead of waiting a week?

Of course, you could have even worse problems – the kinds of problems that Redbridge Council has. The London borough racked up nearly £100,000 in legal bills from injuries occurring in its schools over the last half of a decade according to a recent Freedom of Information request. Waltham Forest, a neighbouring borough, paid out only half as much over the same period of time – and had thrice fewer claims made against it to boot!

So what’s going on in Redbridge that the schools are so poorly maintained that students and staff are slipping and tripping all over the place? Well your guess is as good as mine but I’ll wager it has something to do with not enough budget allocated towards maintenance of facilities. In fact I’d bet my eyeteeth on it. It’s a typical political decision to make – and just as typical it backfires in a major way just like this. Personally I feel bad for everyone who ended up injured as a result, but what can you do against such reckless miserliness?

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