Bolton pays out even more than first thought in school injury compensation claims
BOLTON Council has paid out more in injury compensation at schools in the town than first thought, new figures have revealed.
One of the pupils received compensation after slipping on ice and leaves.
Now it has been revealed the amount of money paid out was even higher as the figure did not take account of injuries to school staff and visitors.
There were an additional 27 payouts to school staff and visitors for trips, slips and other mishaps suffered in the same five-year period, bringing the total payout cost to £257,458.
In neighbouring Bury, the council paid out almost half that figure – £134,000 – for similar claims.
The biggest single payout in Bolton to a non-pupil came in May 2009 when a member of staff was awarded £37,947 after a slip.
An adult visitor to a school was given £14,000 in May 2012 due to a building defect.
Unlike some other Greater Manchester councils, Bolton Council has refused to go into detail about the incidents.
However, Wayne Dunning, a health and safety consultant at Eccles-based Employment Law Advisory Service, said: “It is unfortunate that the council has not made the details public as it would allow for more analysis.
“But every local authority can improve and more can be done to protect children in schools and to reduce the bill for taxpayers.”
A Bolton Council spokesman said: “We have a duty to protect public money and always carry out full and detailed investig-ations before deciding whether or not to pay a claim.
“Although we have paid compensation for 43 claims during the past five financial years, we have successfully defended 68 claims over the same period.
“Taking this into account and given that the figures cover a five-year period, thousands of pupils and staff and visitors, the figures are comparatively low. Safety is obviously a pri-ority and we advise and work with all our schools closely to try and keep accidents to a minimum.”