There are many types of industrial disease and here at Wollens we focus on Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) and Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS), sometimes referred to as Vibration White Finger.
Employers have a duty of care to train employees how to use vibrating tools properly and to ensure that workers take regular breaks from using vibrating tools and machinery so as to avoid them developing HAVS. Unfortunately, all too often employers do not take these responsibilities seriously, leading to workers developing a debilitating HAVS condition.
Symptoms – symptoms of HAVS include numbness, pins and needles and the tips of your fingers turning white, particularly when cold. The whiteness (blanching) can travel down your fingers towards your hand/s; you may notice that your symptoms are worse in cold weather.
Causes – HAVS is typically caused by the excessive use of vibrating tools such as Jackhammers, Whacker Plates, Floor/Road Saws, Vibrating Rollers and Grinders.
Can we help – if your onset of symptoms was less than 3 years ago following regular and excessive use of vibrating tools, please contact one of our experienced fee earners to explore the next steps.
Employers are under a legal duty to provide employees with a safe place of work which includes ensuring that noise does not exceed safe levels and if necessary, they must provide you with adequate hearing protection.
Symptoms – symptoms of noise induced hearing loss include tinnitus as well as a deterioration in your hearing.
Causes – exposure to excessive noise in the work place for prolonged periods of time.
Can we help – if you have worked in a noisy workplace and have recently noticed a reduction in your hearing loss, with or without tinnitus, please contact one of the team to discuss your potential claim in more detail.