Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) is an industrial injury which mainly affects people who use vibrating power tools on a regular basis. In the past, HAVS was often referred to as ‘Vibration White Finger’, but medical professionals soon realised that the illness presented many more symptoms in addition to white fingers.
Protection at work
It’s your employer’s duty to protect you at work, and if you operate any of the following power tools for long periods of time, you may be at risk of developing HAVS:
- Hedge trimmers
- Hammer drills
- Pneumatic drills
If your employer fails to protect you properly and you develop HAVS, you may be eligible to claim for compensation.
Symptoms of Hand Arms Vibration Syndrome
HAVS affects your nerves, blood vessels, muscles and joints in your hands, wrists and arms. It is important that you don’t ignore symptoms, as the condition can become disabling. If you experience any of the below symptoms after spending prolonged periods using power tools, you should contact your GP.
- Numbness in your fingertips
- Cold sensation in your fingers
- Whitening of skin on your fingers
- Tingling sensation in your fingers
You may find you are unable to pick up heavy or small objects, or feel things with your fingers, and symptoms can become worse in cold conditions. Continuing to work with vibrating tools after diagnosis of HAVS can worsen the condition, leading to permanent pain and numbness.
Claiming for compensation
If you have been diagnosed with HAVS, you may be eligible to claim for compensation. People have been seeking compensation since HAVS was recognised as a condition in the 1970’s, and the first step is to find a professional personal injury lawyer who will work on your behalf to get you the compensation you so rightly deserve.
How we can help
Here at Accident Advice Helpline, we are personal injury compensation specialists with more than 13 years’ experience in the industry – so we know what we’re talking about! You can call our freephone helpline 24/7 for a chat in confidence, with no obligation to proceed, and we’ll usually be able to tell you within 30 seconds if you have a viable claim.
If you do decide to proceed, we offer a 100% no win, no fee service, and because we are accredited by Lexcel, the Law Society’s practice management standard, you know you’ll receive the highest level of service.
We are proud to have TV personality and UK consumer champion Esther Rantzen as our patron, and we can process most claims over the phone, so it’s unlikely you’ll need to attend court.
Date Published: November 21, 2013
Author: David Brown