Posted on 15 Dec 2021
Nathan Hiscock can’t remember much about the day he nearly lost his arm in a workplace accident.
It was about 5pm on November 30, 2017, and he was carrying out repairs on a header when he unexpectedly slipped on some hydraulic oil that had leaked from the harvesting machine.
It wasn’t the fall that injured the then machine operator and farm hand; it was the fact he was carrying an angle grinder when he fell, the blade of which sliced through his upper right arm.
“It basically cut everything in and around my bicep bar the bone,” the now 45-year-old explains.
“I somehow managed to get myself into the car and drove the 700 or 800 metres up to the house on the property where I was working and they called an ambulance.”
Mr Hiscock was rushed to hospital and required multiple blood transfusions to replenish the massive amount of blood he had lost. He was transferred to Melbourne’s St Vincent’s Hospital the following day where he underwent a complicated surgery that involved vein and nerve grafts to save his arm from amputation.
He spent several months off work undergoing intensive rehabilitation and has fortunately regained some feeling and movement back in his arm.
He eventually returned to work carrying out other duties at the farm and colleagues stepped in to help whenever his injury prevented him from heavy lifting or other tasks.
Further surgery has also helped him get feeling back in his right hand and fingers, but he said the work injury had changed his life.
“I’m a different person now to who I was before it happened,” he said. “I used to be really sociable but now I rarely go out and don’t like meeting new people because someone usually asks what happened, which gets me all wound up and brings it all back.”
Since his accident, Mr Hiscock has moved to Creswick and set up his own gardening business and calls on mates to assist with anything his injury prevents him from doing.
He has lodged a workers compensation claim against his former employer’s WorkCover insurer, Xchanging, which he described as a “frustrating process” and one that “no one would want to go through unless they had to” to access their legal entitlements.
His lawyer Jess Philips, from Slater and Gordon Lawyers, said Mr Hiscock’s determination “to get on with things” despite his injury was commendable.
“Many people aren’t able to work at all after suffering a serious workplace injury, so the fact that Nathan has been able to recover to a point where he can get back to work, and then start his own business, is amazing,” she said.
Andrea Petrie on 0428 994 937