Broken Barbed Wire And Razor Wire Injury Claims – UK Guide

By Jo Jeffries. Last updated on 10th March 2022. Welcome to our guide on razor and barbed wire injury claims. In it, we explore when you could claim for an injury caused by broken barbed wire or razor wire in the UK. We also answer the question ‘Is barbed wire legal in the UK?’

Have you experienced a razor wire injury in an accident that wasn’t your fault? If so, you could be entitled to receive compensation. There are numerous kinds of places where barbed wire or razor wire is used as part of security fencing. Prisons and military bases both commonly use razor wire. It may also be used as a security measure by some businesses. Some farmers may use barbed wire near the fields and animal pens which they own.

When Could I Claim For A Barbed Wire Injury? Is Barbed Wire Legal In The UK?

razor wire injury is barbed wire legal in uk [h2/h3] razor wire uk broken barbed wire

How to claim for a razor wire injury

If an organisation or individual uses barbed wire in a negligent manner, it could cause injuries to people. You could make a personal injury compensation claim following a barbed wire injury if you can establish that your injury was ultimately caused by the negligent behaviour of someone else. In this guide, we will explain everything you need to know about razor wire injuries and claiming for them.

Get In Touch With Our Team

At UK Law, we can provide free specialist advice on personal injury claims. Our panel of lawyers can answer any questions you may have about making a compensation claim. If you have any queries about barbed wire injuries, then we can help out with those too.

You’re welcome to contact us online by using our live chat service or complete our claim online form. If you’d prefer to call us, you can do so on 020 3870 4868

Services And Information

  1. Everything You Need To Know About Razor Wire Injury Claims
  2. What Is A Razor Wire Injury?
  3. Types Of Barbed Wire Injuries
  4. Is Razor Wire Or Barbed Wire Dangerous?
  5. Injuries Caused By Broken And Damaged Barbed Wire
  6. Barbed And Razor Wire Injury Compensation Calculator
  7. How To Treat Barbed And Razor Wire Injuries
  8. Complications And Infections Caused By Razor Wire Injuries
  9. Can You Legally Put Up Razor Wire? Is Barbed Wire Legal In The UK?
  10. Advice From The Police On Preventing Intruders
  11. How Much Time Do I Have To Claim For A Razor Wire Injury?
  12. I Suffered A Razor Wire Injury, What Should I Do?
  13. Do You Handle Razor Wire Injury Claims On A No Win No Fee Basis?
  14. Contact Us For More Help
  15. Other Information Relating To Injuries Caused By Broken Barbed Wire Or Razor Wire In The UK
  16. FAQs About Barbed And Razor Wire Injuries Is Barbed Wire Legal In The UK?

Everything You Need To Know About Razor Wire Injury Claims

Razor wire or barbed wire is a mesh of metal strips that contain sharp edges. Though the construction of razor and barbed wire are technically different, they are very similar to each other. Therefore, the terms are often used interchangeably.

They are both specifically designed to deter and prevent people from trespassing. Coming into contact with razor or barbed wire can easily cause damage to clothing and flesh, including serious cuts. This could lead to infections. While razor wire can provide some much welcome extra security, it could also cause nasty injuries to someone if it’s used irresponsibly.

Is Barbed Wire Legal In The UK – Your Questions Answered

In this guide, we address what exact injuries razor and barbed wire can cause and how negligent behaviour could lead to these kinds of injuries. We’ll also look at what the law says about the use of razor wire and answer the question ‘Is barbed wire legal in the UK?’. Also, we’ll address potential compensation payouts for this type of injury and the right steps to follow if you want to start a barbed wire injury claim.

You’re welcome to contact UK Law online or on the phone if you need any advice on making a barbed wire injury claim.

What Is A Razor Wire Injury?

A person can be injured if they come into contact with razor wire or barbed wire. These types of injuries can potentially occur if the wire is set up in a negligent way.

When a person or party puts up barbed wire or razor wire, they (or whoever is responsible for maintaining it) owes the public a duty of care. This means whoever is responsible for maintaining the wire should take reasonable steps to make sure the wire is set up in a way where it is unlikely to cause injuries by accident.

Razor wire which is poorly set up or maintained could unintentionally cause an injury to someone. A person injured by razor wire may not have been making any attempt to trespass at the time they were hurt. In such cases, the injured person could make a compensation claim.

Types Of Barbed Wire Injuries

There are several types of injuries that can be caused to a person if they come into contact with razor or barbed wire. The most likely area to be damaged by barbed wire is the skin since the sharp edges are designed to snag onto and rip flesh and clothing. Therefore, specific injuries you may suffer if you have contact with barbed wire can include the following:

Cuts/lacerations

Barbed/razor wire can cause cuts that bleed. It can also cause lacerations, which are deeper cuts that can tear not only the skin but also soft tissues such as tendons and ligaments.

How serious a cut or laceration depends on where it occurs and how deep it is. In extreme cases, a cut to the vein or artery could lead someone to bleed to death.

A cut or laceration can also become more of a threat if the wound becomes infected. This is more likely to happen if the wound is exposed to dirt or other substances. An infection can make treating a wound a more difficult process.

Puncture wounds

Barbed and razor wire can also lead to a puncture wound. This type of wound occurs when someone is stabbed by a pointed object.

A puncture wound caused by barbed wire or another sharp object could potentially be deep enough to reach bones, which could create serious problems for the victim. If the barbed wire is dirty then a puncture wound could also lead to an infection.

Is Razor Wire Or Barbed Wire Dangerous?

Razor wire and barbed wire can both be considered dangerous since contact with either can very easily lead to cuts and other serious injuries.

Both barbed and razor wire are installed in order to deter intruders and obstruct anyone who tries to trespass into an area. If they are installed in an appropriate and responsible manner, then they are usually unlikely to harm people in an accident. Ideally, razor or barbed wire should be installed in a way that makes it easily visible to people from a distance. It should also be easy for people to keep their distance from this security measure.

However, some may set up razor/barbed wire in a way that makes it difficult to see, increasing the risk of injury. Razor and barbed wire can also become more dangerous if it is broken or damaged. That’s because it may end up in places it is not meant to be and someone could accidentally catch themself on it.

Injuries Caused By Broken And Damaged Barbed Wire

It’s possible for barbed wire which is broken or damaged to cause different types of injuries. As mentioned earlier, barbed and razor wire can cause cuts, lacerations and puncture wounds to a person who is exposed to it. This still applies even if the wire is broken or damaged. Someone could accidentally be exposed to barbed wire if it’s broken or damaged, as it could end up in an area it’s not meant to be located.

Broken barbed wire could also be accidentally tripped on. A slip, trip or fall caused by broken barbed wire could cause a vast range of potential injuries. These can include head injuries, dislocated or broken bones and other injuries to the back, shoulder fractures and broken limbs such as a broken elbow or broken leg.

If you’ve been harmed in such a way, please get in touch with our personal injury claims team.

Barbed And Razor Wire Injury Compensation Calculator

If you are making a personal injury claim following a razor or barbed wire injury, you may be wondering how much compensation you’ll receive. There can be a lot of variation with how much is paid for these types of injuries. Numerous factors are taken into consideration. One of them is what exact injuries were caused by barbed or razor wire. How severe these injuries are and whether they caused any additional medical complications may be factored into the compensation payout too. You would need to obtain a medical report to prove your injuries.

In the table below, we’ve included estimated payouts for different injuries you may suffer from a barbed wire injury. You could use these figures to calculate the potential compensation payout for your own personal injury claim. The figures used are taken from the Judicial College guidelines. These guidelines may be used by solicitors in order to work out the value of different injuries.

InjurySeverityCompensation
Digestive System - Damage Resulting From Traumatic InjurySevere damage with continuing pain and discomfort£40,370 to £58,100
Digestive System - Damage Resulting From Traumatic InjurySerious non-penetrating injury causing long-standing or permanent complications£15,750 to £26,050
Digestive System - Damage Resulting From Traumatic InjuryInjuries which are penetrating or include lacerations£6,190 to £11,820
Elbow InjuryModerate or Minor injuries which may include lacerationsUp to £11,820
Hand InjuryModerate injuries including penetrating wounds, tissue damage and deep lacerations£5,260 to £12,460
Knee InjuryModerate injuries which may include lacerationsUp to £12,900
Foot InjuryModest injuries which may include lacerationsUp to £12,900
Toe InjuryModerate injuries which may include lacerationsUp to £9,010
Brain or Head InjuryMinor damage which may have been caused by tripping on barbed/razor wire£2,070 to £11,980
Back InjuryMinor damage which may have been caused by tripping on barbed/razor wire£2,300 to £11,730

This alternative to a personal injury claims calculator focuses on estimated payouts for injuries that fall under ‘general damages’, which is compensation relating to your pain, suffering and impact on your life.

What Other Damages Could I Get For A Broken Barbed Wire Injury?

You could receive additional payments for ‘special damages’, which cover any financial losses caused directly by your barbed wire injury. Examples of things you could receive compensation for under special damages include the following:

  • The cost of medical treatments for your razor/barbed wire injury.
  • Travel costs that have accumulated attending appointments for medical treatment.
  • Loss of earnings due to having to take unpaid time off work because of your razor/barbed wire injury.

To get a more precise estimate of your potential compensation award or to learn what else can be factored into personal injury compensation claims, please get in touch with our team.

How To Treat Barbed And Razor Wire Injuries

If you or someone near you is injured by razor or barbed wire, then your first priority should be getting the wounds treated correctly. You may be able to do some initial treatment on the wounds if they are not too severe. In some cases, injuries caused by razor or barbed wire will require contacting emergency healthcare services.

You should call 999 immediately if injuries from barbed or razor wire cause the following issues:

  • The razor/barbed wire cannot be removed from the affected area(s).
  • There is excessive bleeding.
  • There are cuts or puncture wounds to the chest, abdomen or neck.
  • Razor/barbed wire has injured at least one eye.
  • You can’t stop the bleeding after 10 minutes of firm pressure.

Seeking medical help for an injury caused by razor wire in the UK

Call or see a healthcare provider right away if you are injured by barbed or razor wire and any of the following applies:

  • You have a puncture wound that is deep, on the face or has reached the bone
  • At least one of the wounds is noticeably dirty

If you are able to, it is recommended that you take the following steps just following an injury caused by razor or barbed wire:

  • Stop the bleeding. To do this, apply firm and direct pressure on the cut or wound with a sterile gauze or cloth until the bleeding ends.
  • Clean and cover the wound. Rinsing the wound with clean water for several minutes is recommended. If you have an antibiotic cream, apply that to the wounded areas. Then apply a sterile bandage to protect the wound from dirt or further harm.
  • You could then consider taking medicines to reduce the pain of your wounds. A doctor could recommend the appropriate treatment based on any conditions you may have or other medicines you may be currently taking.

Complications And Infections Caused By Razor Wire Injuries

One of the potential dangers of getting a cut or puncture wound from razor wire is that such an injury could potentially become infected. This is more likely to happen if the razor wire which caused the injuries is dirty or rusted. Also, there may be the risk that dirt could get into the wounds at a later point.

You may be able to treat small wounds caused by razor wire in order to prevent infection. However, if you have any large wounds, then it’s best to see a medical professional who can help as soon as possible.

Could It Be Infected?

You should also seek medical care if you show any symptoms of having an infection. If a wound is becoming worse instead of healing up, then that could be a sign of infection. A wound may increase in redness, swelling or pain when it is infected, and it may be warm to the touch.

Other symptoms of an infection can include the following:

  • Aches and pains
  • Fever and chills
  • Nausea
  • Unusual colour or discharge around the wound
  • Vomiting

Can You Legally Put Up Razor Wire? Is Barbed Wire Legal In The UK?

People have the right to set up barbed and razor wire within the boundaries of an area which they legally own. This includes fencing which belongs to the person setting up the wire. There are, however, restrictions on what householders, farmers and business owners can do when setting up barbed or razor wire.

Restrictions on using razor wire – is barbed wire legal in the UK?

A piece of legislation called the Occupiers’ Liability Act 1957 has to be taken into account by anyone putting up barbed or razor wire. It states that anyone who owns or controls property has a legal duty of care to protect people on their property from foreseeable harm.

Therefore, if you set up razor wire, you have to take reasonable steps to minimise the risk of anyone being accidentally harmed by the wire. If someone is hurt by the razor wire you set up, you could be considered negligent if the incident was realistically avoidable.

Another piece of legislation that’s relevant in some cases is Section 164 of the Highways Act 1980. It says that any barbed wire used on land adjoining a public highway must not cause a nuisance to humans or animals using the highway. If the barbed wire doesn’t meet this requirement, the local authority can order the barbed wire changed or removed.

Occupiers’ duty of care to trespassers – is barbed wire legal in the UK if it injures trespassers?

The legal duty of care under the Occupiers’ Liability Act was extended in a second version of the Act, introduced in 1984. It extends the duty to keep people safe to those who may trespass on the property. This includes burglars and vandals.

This means that if a trespasser is injured on your property by razor or barbed wire, they may be able to sue you for their injuries. There is, however, some protection given to property owners and managers by the Criminal Justice Act 2003. This legislation states that if a trespasser suffers an injury while committing a crime for which they are convicted, then they will only be able to sue the property owner if they get the court’s permission to do so.

A claim by a trespasser may only be realistic if it can be established that the property owner/manager could have realistically foreseen that any potential trespassers would likely be injured. For example, if broken glass was deliberately placed at a likely entry point, the property owner could foresee an injury occurring here to anyone who trespassed.

Advice From The Police On Preventing Intruders

The police usually discourage people from using barbed/razor wire or broken glass for security at your house. This is because by doing so, you make yourself liable to civil action from other people including potential trespassers. The police suggest that alternative methods such as trellis fencing and defensible planting are often more effective methods.

How Much Time Do I Have To Claim For A Razor Wire Injury?

As in other cases of personal injury, you generally will have 3 years to start barbed wire injury claims. This time limit is in the Limitation Act 1980.  This time limit will begin on the date that your injury was sustained. If you allow this time limit to expire then it becomes very unlikely that you’ll be able to make any razor wire compensation claims.

However, there are some exceptions to this time limit. For example, whilst the cuts you sustain could only be minor, it’s possible they could become infected further down the line. The date that you are made aware of any injuries such as this can be addressed at the date of knowledge. The date of knowledge can be used as the start date of your 3-year time limit.

Child Razor Wire Injury Claims

If a child is injured by barbed wire then their time limit will not begin until their 18th birthday. This is because those under 18 cannot make a claim themselves. Before they reach adulthood, their claims can only be made on their behalf by a legal adult. They would be known in this context as a litigation friend. This may be a parent or guardian, for example.

The claimant will have 3 years from their 18th birthday to make the claim themselves if it has not already been made for them beforehand.

Barbed Wire Injury Claims For Those With A Reduced Mental Capacity

If the claimant lacks the mental capacity to claim, then their time limit is also suspended. The time limit will only begin if and when they are deemed capable of making their claim.

Before this date, their claim can only be made by a litigation friend.

If you’re confused by any of these time limits, get in touch with us today.

I Suffered A Razor Wire Injury, What Should I Do?

If you suffer a razor or barbed wire injury, then the first thing you should do is focus on getting the medical treatment you require. Razor wire injuries can be very serious and can potentially lead to complications such as infection of wounds. When receiving the medical care you require, you should try to obtain evidence of your treatments. This could prove useful later if you decided to make a personal injury claim.

If you have reason to believe that negligent behaviour from another person or company caused your razor or barbed wire injury, then you could be entitled to compensation. If you’re considering starting a claim, then you should collect evidence to support it. However, make sure you’ve sufficiently recovered from your injuries before beginning this process. Potential evidence could include photos, CCTV footage or witness contact details.

Is barbed wire legal in the UK – Ask a solicitor for claims advice

When you have finished gathering evidence, you may wish to hire a solicitor before submitting your claim. A solicitor can be very useful since they should be able to guide you through all the legal steps to follow when making a personal injury claim. We recommend that you choose a solicitor who has experience with handling claims involving a razor or barbed wire injury.

This is where we can help. Our panel of specialist personal injury lawyers have decades of experience handling claims like this and can help you too. Simply call us on the number at the top of this page to find out more.

Do You Handle Razor Wire Injury Claims On A No Win No Fee Basis?

At UK Law, our panel of lawyers can advise on razor or barbed wire injury claims made on a No Win No Fee basis. If you hire a solicitor to support your claim, you may sign an agreement with them called a No Win No Fee agreement. This is also known as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). You can enjoy several benefits when you make a claim on a No Win No Fee basis, such as:

  • You will not need to pay fees to your solicitor upfront.
  • No payments to your solicitor will be required during the claim.
  • If the claim is unsuccessful, you won’t need to pay your solicitor’s legal fees (success fees).

Under a No Win No Fee agreement, you’ll only be required to pay your solicitor’s legal fees if you win your case. To cover their payment, your solicitor will usually take a small percentage for No Win No Fee claims from your final compensation award. This is capped by law, ensuring you take home the bulk of your compensation.

Contact Us For More Help 

Do you still have any questions about claiming for barbed and razor wire injuries? You can contact UK Law now for free specialist advice. You can contact us through the following methods:

Other Information Relating To Injuries Caused By Broken Barbed Wire Or Razor Wire In The UK

You can check out some of our other guides below which may be useful to your potential personal injury claim.

Accident At Work Compensation Claims Guide

Some people could potentially experience barbed and razor wire injuries at their place of work. You can check out the guide linked above for more info on accident at work claims.

I Tripped Over Glass Or A Bottle, How Do I Make A Claim?

Like razor wire, glass and bottles have the potential to cause cuts and penetrative wounds. The guide above explains how you can claim if you were injured after tripping or slipping on glass or a bottle.

A Guide To Claiming For An Accident In A Shop

If you are injured by barbed or razor wire used by a shop, you could potentially claim against that shop. You can read the guide linked above to learn more about how claiming for an accident in a shop works.

Requesting CCTV Footage Of Yourself

You have a legal right to request CCTV footage of yourself. You should act quickly with this step as the footage can be deleted either intentionally or as part of an automated process.

Does My Cut Need Stitches?

Information from the NHS.

More Information On Cuts And Grazes

Another guide from the NHS with additional information on the matter.

FAQs About Barbed And Razor Wire Injuries – Is Barbed Wire Legal In The UK?

What do you do if you get cut by barbed wire?

If you get cut by barbed or razor wire, your first priority should be to get your wounds treated. The sooner you get treatment, the more likely you are to avoid issues such as infections.

Is it against the law to use barbed wire? Is barbed wire legal in the UK?

People have the legal right to use barbed wire within property or land which they own or control.

How dangerous is barbed wire?

Coming into contact with barbed wire can cause cuts, lacerations and puncture wounds. The severity of these wounds can vary from minor to very serious or even life-threatening. They could lead to a permanent injury, such as a scar.

Can razor wire kill you?

In the most extreme cases, someone who comes into contact with razor wire could get a life-threatening injury. An example is a deep cut to a vein or artery which could cause someone to bleed to death in a fatal accident.

What injuries could broken barbed wire or razor wire in the UK cause?

Injuries caused by broken barbed wire could include cuts or lacerations. These could lead to scarring. Unfortunately, some scars could be permanent, and could affect you psychologically too. If you suffer physical or mental harm from razor wire in the UK due to someone’s breach of their duty of care towards you, you could claim.

The compensation you would receive would depend on the severity and nature of your injuries.

Is barbed wire legal in the UK on private property?

In most urban areas, razor wire in the UK is not advised to be used. The police advise against its use because of the risk of injury broken barbed wire could cause. They state that a property owner could be held liable for injuries caused by razor wire under The Occupiers Liability Act 1984.

The Act states that even if someone is on your property without permission, you could have a duty of care towards their safety.

Is barbed wire legal in the UK next to a footpath?

According to Section 164 of the Highways Act 1980, if a barbed wire fence is on land that adjoins a highway, and is a nuisance the Local Authority could act. They could issue a notice for it to be removed.

If I’m injured by broken barbed wire, could it get infected?

If you receive a cut to the skin, you would be wise to get advice on how to treat it. Keeping wounds clean and free from debris is important to aid healing, according to the NHS. A wound is at risk of becoming infected if it is not kept clean.

Thanks for reading our guide on razor and broken barbed wire injury claims. Now we’ve answered the question of ‘Is barbed wire legal in the UK?’ you might be looking to claim compensation for an injury from razor wire in the UK. If you are, why not call our team to get started.