A Doncaster man has won a legal battle for compensation after suffering appalling injuries in a workplace accident.
Lenny Andruchiw, aged 63, of Harpenden Drive, Dunscroft, had his thumb and all four fingers on his left hand severed by an industrial saw while working for Balby-based Dixon Timber Products.
Since the accident in May 2010, Mr Andruchiw has been locked in a legal wrangle with his employers until this week when they agreed a six figure settlement out of court, without a formal admission of liability.
Mr Andruchiw, an experienced operative, said: “I was cutting small pieces of wood known as spacers when one of the offcuts was dragged down by the saw and my hand came into contact with the unguarded saw blade. I had only been given thin gloves which gave some protection against the splinters and the sharp melamine edges, but offered no protection against a saw blade.”
He was taken to Doncaster Royal Infirmary but immediately transferred to the Northern District General Hospital in Sheffield for specialist surgery to try to save the fingers. Surgeons were able to reattach the little finger using wires, but the other digits were too badly damaged to be saved.
Mr Andruchiw said: “I’ve been on sick leave continuously since it happened but I go up to the Northern General three times a week and do work in a purpose built joiner’s shop there. It’s my therapy to keep myself motivated. I’ve never really been out of work since I was 15 but I am getting back into it and looking for a job.”
Employers Dixon Timber Products manufacture worktops, cabinets and units at a workshop in Roberts Road, where the incident took place.
Managing director John Dixon said: “Mr Andruciw had an accident at work. Liability has always remained in issue. There are numerous issues to consider in any such claim and an appropriate settlement was reached. The company takes health and safety issues very seriously. We wish Mr Andruchiw well for the future.”
Mr Andruchiw added: “I’m glad it’s come to a conclusion and I can get on with my life.”