Collins v First Quench Retailing Ltd (31 January 2003, Court of Session, 2003 GWD126)

An employer might be held responsible for not properly assessing risks and putting reasonable measures in place to protect employees.

Case facts

Mrs Collins sued her employer for personal injury on the basis that her employers were at fault for failing to provide her with adequate protection from an attack (robbery). In a 20 year period there had been 13 reported crimes at the shop.

Conclusion for me

The judge ruled that the employer was at fault for not properly assessing the risks and putting reasonable measures in place to protect the employee. This responsibility is outlined in Regulation 3 of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.

"...I hold the prospect of this robbery occurring would have been substantially diminished had there been double manning. [The employers] created a situation in which a robbery, or similar act of physical violence to staff, was much more likely too occur than if there had been double manning I am satisfied that the [employers'] failure to take reasonable care and introduce double manning materially increased the risk of a robbery of this type happening. I am accordingly satisfied [their] failure was a material cause of the incident, which resulted in [Mrs Collins'] condition."

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Updated: 3rd May, 2021
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