Family of Heathrow baggage handler who suffered brain damage after she was dragged into a conveyer belt when her scarf got caught take legal action against her employers

Jasbir Sahota suffered disabling injuries after the incident in FebruaryFamily now demand Menzies pay for specialist treatment costing around £300k 

The family of a Heathrow baggage handler, who suffered brain damage after getting her scarf caught in machinery and being dragged along a conveyor belt, is taking legal action against her employers.

Jasbir Sahota, who has been working at the airport for 30 years, was left seriously injured after the accident on February 14.

The 52-year-old was unloading luggage from a Loganair flight arriving in the capital from Dundee when she got the item of clothing caught in the machine.

The incident caused disabling injuries, as well as brain damage, leaving Mrs Sahota in need of specialist care.

Now her family are demanding her employer Menzies, a global aviation services company, pay for her transfer from Hillingdon Hospital to Wellington Hospital - a private facility which provides the complex care Mrs Sahota requires.

Jasbir Sahota (pictured), who has been working at the airport for 30 years, was left seriously injured after an accident on a Heathrow conveyor belt on February 14

Jasbir Sahota (pictured), who has been working at the airport for 30 years, was left seriously injured after an accident on a Heathrow conveyor belt on February 14

Her family is now taking legal action against her employers Menzies (pictured: her two children, Nina Haer and Harman Sahota, along with her brother-in-law Satti Heir)

Her family is now taking legal action against her employers Menzies (pictured: her two children, Nina Haer and Harman Sahota, along with her brother-in-law Satti Heir)

Her two children, Nina Haer and Harman Sahota, along with brother-in-law Satti, told The Telegraph that the firm has been 'treating her like a number rather than a valued employee' and that they have been forced into legal action.

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Heathrow baggage handler is rushed to hospital in a critical condition after her scarf got trapped in a conveyor belt and was dragged along

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'Jaz deserves the best care and the best treatment and this just isn't available on the NHS,' said Satti . 'To stand a fighting chance of making any improvement she needs to be moved to the Wellington.

'Every day she stays at Hillingdon - and they are doing their best - it is a day we're losing her and that's awful.'

The family said that Menzies had offered to help them following the accident but that the only assistance they had received had been the company paying for taxis to and from the hospital.

They added that the firm had fallen out of contact with them and now rarely got in touch.

According to Nina, no one enjoyed their job more than Mrs Sahota, whose condition has also taken its toll on the people around her.

Financially, the cost of a transfer to Wellington would reach around £300,000 which is more than her family can afford.

Meanwhile, Harman, 24, has been forced to take time off work as a signal engineer with Network Rail for stress-related reasons.

The 52-year-old was unloading luggage from a Loganair flight arriving in the capital from Dundee when she got the item of clothing caught in the machine (Stock Photo)

The 52-year-old was unloading luggage from a Loganair flight arriving in the capital from Dundee when she got the item of clothing caught in the machine (Stock Photo)

Nina has also had to make adjustments, taking a less demanding position for a recruitment company near the family home in Hayes, west London.

Menzies was founded as a wholesaler and bookstall in Edinburgh by John Menzies in 1833 and now covers cargo handling, passenger services and ground operations at airports all over the world, pulling $2.2billion of revenue last year.

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Lawyers for Mrs Sahota's family have found a number of causes which they say raise questions over Menzies' commitment to its employees' health and safety.

On Christmas Eve 2016, Rebecca Smith was injured when she fell through a gap in the railing on top of a luggage belt loader.

The incident occurred when the loader was hit by a moving vehicle and a Health and Safety Executive investigation into the incident found that the firm had foreseen the risk of a collision between such vehicles but had not acted to mitigate the risk of an error from the driver.

Menzies, who pleaded guilty to breaching section 2(1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, was fined £181,500 with costs of £21,043.

That case came after the firm was fined £60,000 by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) after the death of Cesar Valenzuela, 51, who was thrown from a baggage cart at Los Angeles International Airport.

Mr Valenzuela was found to not have had a functioning seat belt.

Mrs Sahota's solicitors Fieldfisher are heading to court in the next few weeks to seek the disclosure of material that could help in a possible future negligence claim.

According to Nina, no one enjoyed their job more than Mrs Sahota, whose condition has also taken its toll on the people around her (pictured: Heathrow Terminal 2)

According to Nina, no one enjoyed their job more than Mrs Sahota, whose condition has also taken its toll on the people around her (pictured: Heathrow Terminal 2)

A Menzies spokesperson told MailOnline: 'An active investigation is underway following a serious incident involving a Menzies employee at Heathrow Airport earlier this year.

'As this is ongoing, we cannot provide any further detail at this time. Our thoughts are with our colleague and their family.'

Heathrow Airport declined to comment.

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