Three train drivers have been awarded more than £22,000 in compensation after being left permanently disabled by Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS), in a ruling that their union has argued could set a precedent for other train drivers who suffer similar injuries.
The ruling in November by Swansea Crown Court was against train company Arriva, which, according to the judge, had failed to assess the drivers’ working conditions for risks to their health and safety or put in appropriate preventative measures.
The three drivers all suffered from CTS and it was work-related, the judge added.
They were among 50 working at a depot driving locomotives along the Heart of Wales lines.
After they were diagnosed, the drivers contacted the rail union Aslef, which then launched a claim for compensation.
Aslef general secretary Keith Norman said: “This is a fantastic result for our members and sets a precedent for all train drivers across the country who suffer from CTS. Employers should ensure they put proper risk assessments in place to make sure all rail workers have the safest conditions possible.”
In a statement, Arriva Trains Wales added it would be taking the time to consider the implications of the decision “and the next steps with our legal and health and safety advisers”.
In a separate development, a railway worker was killed in December after being hit by a train outside Leeds city station. The Network Rail employee was working on tracks when the incident occurred. A British Transport Police investigation has been launched.