To start this consultation,we must address the subject at hand, we will be discussing if there is any liabilityfor negligence in the case of the two workers who lost their lives afterfalling from the upper level of a tall building that was under construction byHBC. Thisconsultation will focus on: · Liabilityfor negligence, including damages and any defences.· Thecase of the workers· Thecase of the elderly couple · Thecase of ‘Fluffy’ · Conclusion First of all, wemust understand the definition of negligence. Negligence is a breach of a duty of care which results in damage. To prove thatThe Higher Better Company have acted negligently the plaintiff must prove fourthings: · Dutyof Care · Breachof Duty · Damage· Causation We will bediscussing the individual facts of the case to see if the highlighted fourbranches for negligence have been met in this case. In tort of negligencecontractors will generally owe a duty of care in tort to their clients to takereasonable care to avoid personal injury or damage.
HBC did have aduty of care to the deceased in this circumstance as they must ensure safetyfor their workers. In terms of breach of duty, HBC have not acted with thestandard of care that should be expected in these circumstances. The harnessthat the worker who was wearing one should have passed safety to ensure thisscenario did not happen. And it should easily have been foreseeable thatcutting corners in the cost of safety harnesses in this instance has causedloss of life. To determine whether the damage to the party in question wascaused due to this breach in duty there is a little bit more information needed.This is due to the fact that one worker did fall with a harness on, however,the other worker was not wearing a harness but still fell.
The informationrequired will be listed at the bottom of the consultation. Using the Caparotest to help with this consultation we must establish three things to meet thecriteria. Firstly, that harm was reasonably foreseeable, secondly that therewas a relationship of proximity and finally that it is fair, just andreasonable to impose a duty of care. If proven that the harnesses resulted inthe fall all three section of the Caparo test will have been met. The harm wasreasonably foreseeable due to the cheap harnesses, the relationship isestablished due to the fact that the deceased were workers for Higher Bettercompany and it is also just and fair to impose a duty of care. If it is proventhat the harness was the reason for the fall(s) this would prove a liability ofnegligence.
If on the other hand, it is proven that an external factor, forexample the wind, caused the fall due to only two of the Caparo test factorsbeing met the company would not be liable of negligence as would not have beena foreseeable factor. With regard tothe elderly pensioners who saw the two workers fall to their death the neighbourrule will be applied. The Neighbour Test required two criteria to be met;reasonable foresight of harm and a relationship of proximity. Due to norelationship of proximity between The Higher Better Company there is noliability of negligence involved, once again, if a factor that was not withinthe companies control caused the deaths of the workers this would rule outnegligence with regard to the Neighbour rule even more so. ‘Fluffy’ is mentioned,however, it is not mentioned what fluffy is this will be put at the bottom ofthe consultation. That being said no liability of negligence is there as ‘Fluffy’only witnessed the news on the television and no relationship of proximity canbe drawn between HBC and ‘Fluffy’. To conclude,further information will be needed to help determine a likely outcome for thiscase. With regard to the media coverage a recommendation for a super-injunctionon the media outlets.
Injunctions cost £45 plus lawyer fees. No liability ofnegligence is due to the elderly pensioners or ‘Fluffy’. Based on the furtherinformation provided a determination of liability of negligence will be given.As things stand, if the harnesses caused the two deaths then there is a casefor negligence by the plaintiff. If the wind caused the deaths, then using theCaparo test no liability for negligence will be present.
If liability ofnegligence is proven these are the things that will need to be considered; Medicalbills, loss of income, survivors pain and suffering and punitive damages. Furtherinformation needed: · Isthere any CCTV footage to determine what caused the fall? · Anyeye witnesses to determine how the workers were behaving, and why one of theworkers was not wearing a harness· Aweather report at the altitude the workers were at when they fell to see if thefall may have been caused by an unexpected gust of wind· Werecorrect safety tests done on the harnesses · Did thefall of the worker who was wearing the harness result in the fall of the otherworker, meaning both deaths would have been as a result of a malfunctioningharness· Who/Whatis Fluffy?· Did HBChave life insurance policies on the workers · Whatfamily members of the deceased will be affected.