Noise-induced hearing loss in the UK
Being exposed to excessive levels of noise over a prolonged period of time can lead to irreversible hearing damage. Although this is one of the most common health problems in the United Kingdom, it can be difficult to detect until it is too late, as the damage occurs over time.
According to the Health and Safety Executive, industrial hearing loss is the most common work-related disease in the country. In addition, civil claims for industrial hearing loss account for around 75% of all occupational disease claims in the UK.
Under United Kingdom law, employers are required to take action if the noise level in the working environment exceeds 80db(A). Above 85db(A), an employer is required to provide free hearing protection for staff and to enforce the wearing of said protective gear. In addition, hearing protection zones should be clearly marked.
Where your employer has failed to take these steps and this has resulted in you suffering noise-induced hearing loss, you could claim for compensation.
Which industries are affected?
Just about any business in the manufacturing sector is affected by high noise levels at work. In addition, jobs in the construction industry, forestry industry and energy and water supply have a large number of cases of noise-induced hearing loss. Some of the higher-risk processes and machines for noise exposure include the following:
- Packaging machinery.
- Glass bottling lines.
- Milling operations.
- Sawing and cutting machines.
- Pneumatics and compressed air.
- Blast chillers and freezers.
- Wheeled trolleys.
How do I know if I am suffering from noise-induced hearing loss?
Although it can be difficult to detect as it gradually builds up over time, noise-induced hearing loss does have some earlier symptoms as well. These include:
- Complaints that you have the television too loud.
- Difficulty having a conversation.
- Difficulty using the phone.
- Sounds like ‘t’,‘s’ and ‘d’ become difficult to discern.
- You suffer from a constant ringing or buzzing noise in your ears.
How can I claim for hearing loss?
If you believe you may have suffered noise-induced hearing loss, contact Accident Advice Helpline. Our free legal helpline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week on 0800 689 0500 or from your mobile on 0333 500 0993. When you call us, one of our friendly legal advisors will ask you a few questions about your hearing loss before giving you an honest assessment of whether you will be entitled to claim for compensation. If you have a strong case, you will be referred to one of our expert personal injury lawyers.
There is no need to worry about the cost of making a compensation claim either. All of our lawyers work on a 100% no win, no fee* basis.
Call Accident Advice Helpline now to start your hearing loss claim. You have nothing to lose.
Date Published: May 4, 2014
Author: David Brown