Case Study: Fractured Wrist and Radius Bone After Fall Due to Pothole in Road

A woman who fractured her wrist and radius bone after falling due to a pothole in the road has been awarded £13,000 compensation with help from JMW.

The accident

A pensioner living an active lifestyle, Mrs B Jones was crossing a busy main road on her way home.  The main road was made up of four lanes of traffic, two per direction, and a central island for pedestrians.  She crossed safely into the central island and remained stationary until the traffic lights on the other side of the road were red.  Mrs B Jones began to cross when her foot became caught in a pothole at the edge of the traffic island, causing her to trip and fall into the road.  Mrs B Jones automatically put her arms forward to break her fall, but was unable to do so and landed on the ground.  She was helped to her feet by the drivers of two lorries that were stationary at the traffic lights, who assisted her onto a bench on the other side of the road, where she sat for a short while before she made her way home. 

Legal advice

Mrs B Jones decided to seek compensation for her accident and was put in touch with JMW Solicitors LLP, where Senior Associate Angela Rowlandson handled her claim. 

Angela pursued the local authority responsible for maintaining the road, who suggested that Mrs B Jones was partly responsible for the accident as she did not notice the pothole.  However, it transpired that other members of the public had fallen in the same place as Mrs B Jones, which enabled us to highlight the danger that the pothole presented to the public, and that the local authority was fully negligent in its maintenance of what was clearly a busy pedestrian route. 

Lasting effects

Mrs B Jones was in considerable pain after the accident; the fracture to her wrist took longer to heal than first anticipated and she was forced to wear a plaster cast for ten weeks, and a wrist brace for a further four weeks.  She then underwent intensive physiotherapy, due to continued problems she suffered gripping and with tightness in her little finger.  Mrs B Jones also felt a severe impact on her lifestyle as a result of the accident, losing her confidence in a number of areas.  She experienced flashbacks of the event and stopped feeling comfortable driving, forcing her to sell her car.  She is also reluctant to walk long distances and her hobbies of walking and playing bridge suffered as a result. 

Angela instructed a consultant orthopaedic surgeon to examine Mrs B Jones, who confirmed her injuries and the physical and psychological effects they had on Mrs B Jones’ life.  The specialist also confirmed that Mrs B Jones will continue to suffer from permanent restriction of movement in her wrist.  His report placed Angela in a strong position to argue that Mrs B Jones receive compensation for the effect the accident had on her life and she was able to use this information to boost her compensation claim against the local authority. 

The case

Despite the strong evidence we provided them, the authority was slow to respond to our case and we were forced into a position of issuing court proceedings against them, so that we could secure a swift settlement for Mrs B Jones.  This prompted the local authority to make an offer in full and final settlement of Mrs B Jones’ claim.  However, Angela felt that the offer severely undervalued Mrs B Jones’ case and, with Mrs B Jones’ consent, pushed the local authority for a figure that she felt was more appropriate. 


Angela was ultimately able to settle Mrs B Jones’ case for £13,000.  Mrs B Jones was very pleased about the level of compensation Angela was able to get from the local authority.  It is hoped that in time, Mrs B Jones will regain more confidence and this resolution is very helpful in being able to put this incident behind her and enjoy the rest of her retirement. 

Have you also suffered injury because of a pothole?

If you have been involved in an accident caused by a pothole, call our expert team on 0800 054 6570 or fill in our contact form.

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