A driver/cleaner, infected by a flesh eating disease caused by a piece of metal left on the floor at work, while working for a Kent bus company, was "four hours from death".
Forty-nine year-old Izzy Lloyd, who lives in Kent, is set to receive substantial damages from her then employers, Arriva Southern Counties Limited as a result of the incident at the Armstrong Road depot in Maidstone on 6 April 2010. Ms Lloyd has since suffered a leg amputation and is unemployed.
Judge William Birtles at the Mayors and City of London Court in his judgement said that Ms Lloyd alighted from one of buses she had been cleaning into the engineering bay.
He said: "On stepping onto the floor she felt a sharp metal spike pierce her work boot and penetrate her foot.
“On the floor of the engineering bay and where the claimant had her accident there were pieces of metal probably pop rivets which should have been cleaned up and were not .
“Unfortunately the wound became infected resulting in necrotising fascilitis to her left foot and ankle."
Izzy Lloyd said: "Going to work is not meant to result in a life threatening condition. Had Arriva paid attention to health and safety and operated a proper cleaning policy this would have been avoided.
“Instead, I have suffered ever since and had to have an amputation of my left leg in January 2013. The compensation I get from this case will help me to move on with my life, but nothing could ever give me back the family time and lifestyle I had before."
By the time she was admitted to hospital on 9 April, she required emergency surgery to control the infection. Necrotising fascilitis is flesh eating bacteria which is little known or understood.
Ms Lloyd is a member of Unite, the country's largest union and the union’s director of legal services Howard Beckett said: "The liability win contains a legal first - establishing liability on the basis of regulation 9 of the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992.
"Ms Lloyd has now had her leg amputated and the money and support that she gets from this case will almost certainly be life changing for her.
"By the time she got to hospital she was told by medical staff that she was four hours from death, if the flesh eating condition was not treated immediately.
“This case demonstrates the importance of Unite’s legal services in offering protection to members who, on their own, could never mount such an expensive legal action.
“The hard work and expertise of the solicitors, Pattinson & Brewer in bringing this case to a successful conclusion is to be commended.”
The scale of the damages that Ms Lloyd will receive is unlikely to be determined for at least a year.
Note to news editors:
Please note that Izzy Lloyd does not wish to give any media interviews. However, Marcus Weatherby from Pattinson & Brewer would be prepared to be interviewed on this case. His mobile is: 07795 087850.
For further information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.