Over exposure to noisy surroundings can cause workers to experience a range of problems with their ears, however the most extreme condition is permanent hearing loss, otherwise known as industrial deafness.
Industrial deafness is unfortunately one of the most common conditions workers suffer as a result of an extensively loud working environment.
There are many jobs which can cause people to suffer damaged hearing, and although employers should protect workers from being subjected to dangerous levels of sound, negligence from either a worker or employer can cause permanent damage to hearing.
Complete hearing loss tends to be gradual and often takes a period of time for a worker to realise they have suffered from the effects of working in a noisy environment. By the time a worker has noticed their hearing has changed it is often too late, so it is important for any noise exposure risks to be addressed as quickly as possible.
There is a variety of damage that can be done within the ear through loud noise. Essentially, hair cells deteriorate in the inner ear and do not replenish, meaning that a person will not be able to hear some frequencies as well.
Difficulty in hearing voices is usually the first signs of permanent hearing loss, as it is sensitivity to this frequency. By the time it is noticed, the damage has already occurred and cannot be reversed.
Another by-product of industrial deafness can be tinnitus. Click here to read about making a tinnitus claim.
Employers are obliged to adhere to the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2006, which states strict guidelines to ensure employees are protected from over exposure to loud noises in any working environment.
At YouClaim, our solicitors will seek to establish whether your employer neglected any of the responsibilities outlined in these pieces of legislation. These include establishing whether your employer:
A policy of hearing damage prevention should contain a number of different provisions. This policy should include stipulations for such things as a programme for fitting silencers to noisy machinery, sound insulation of noisy machinery and separation of noisy machinery from main work areas so as to minimise the risk to other employees in the workplace.
Any effective policy should also provide details on the employer's use of suitable earplugs and ear defenders.
Any evidence indicating that your employer has neglected some or all of these obligations could form the grounds for proving you are entitled to receive industrial deafness compensation.
Losing your hearing can put you out of touch with the world around you and make communication difficult. You may find it can have a significant impact on your quality of life as well as forcing you to change job sectors.
If you are suffering from hearing loss as the result of over exposure to loud sounds at work, your employer could be at fault for failing to provide a safe working environment.
YouClaim’s experienced industrial illness solicitors can help you make an industrial deafness claim for compensation. Call us now on 0800 10 757 95 or fill out an online enquiry form and we will be in touch shortly.
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