The Gladstone Coal Port
The Gladstone Coal Port Paul Braven GLA200315COAL

Ports employee seeking $940k damages after work injury

A FORMER Central Queensland ports worker is seeking $940,729 in damages after allegedly slipping on a coal dust-covered steel plate located between rail tracks and sustaining an ankle injury.

David John Gurney Henzell, 58, was employed by Gladstone Ports Corporation as a dump station operator when the alleged incident took place on July11, 2015.

Documents filed in the Supreme Court of Rockhampton on MrHenzell's behalf claim he was walking across railway tracks at Dump Station 3 from Pit 3 to Pit 1 about 5.20am when he walked onto a steel plate between the tracks.

"Not known to the plaintiff, the chequer steel plate which had previously been in place had been damaged and had been replaced with smooth steel plate which had become covered over time with a film of coal dust,” the document stated.

Mr Henzell claims he then slipped on this coal dust-covered steel plate, injuring his right ankle.

He claims he sustained a fracture of the lower end of the right fibula and now has a marked reduction in walking ability with a dependence on a walking aid and with the ability to walk severely limited on a permanent basis.

Mr Henzell has had two operations - a bone graft, pinning and plating the area and the second to remove the pins and plate.

His ankle was in plaster on two occasions for long periods of time and he had a staphylococcal infection following the second operation.

The documents claim the injury to MrHenzell was caused by 25 points of negligence by GPC and 16 breaches of duty by GPC to MrHenzell.

The GPC was contacted for comment prior to publication but has opted to not comment at this point in the proceedings.