Noise Induced Hearing Loss Claims
Noise induced hearing loss may be caused by years of exposure to excess noise in the workplace.
This affects around 200,000 people in the UK, with more than 1 million people at risk of developing hearing problems in the future.
Noise induced hearing loss is caused by damage to the structures within the cochlea. This damage results in loss of both frequency sensitivity and increase in hearing threshold i.e. noises need to be louder to be able to hear them.
Permanent hearing damage, which can be caused immediately by sudden, extremely loud, explosive noises, or gradually due to prolonged exposure noise, is thought to be incurable. There is no treatment for noise-induced tinnitus.
Symptoms and early signs of noise induced hearing loss
- Muffled hearing
- Having trouble understanding what people say, especially in crowded rooms
- Conversation becomes difficult as you have to ask people to repeat what they just said to you
- Your family complains about the television being too loud
- Not being able to hear high-pitched sounds, like a baby crying or a telephone ringing in another room
- You find it difficult to catch sounds like 't', 'd' and 's', so you confuse similar words
- Tinnitus (ringing, whistling, buzzing or humming in the ears)
These usually develop gradually and you may not be aware of them until they are advanced. Initially you may notice a ringing in the ear that may subside. Unfortunately each excess noise exposure adds to the previous one to produce permanent deafness, this usually occurs within the first 10 years of exposure to noises in an industrial environment.
The only way to find out if you have noise induced hearing loss is to have your hearing tested by a trained professional.
Industry and tools associated with noise induced hearing loss
Workers employed in noisy industries e.g. construction, those who use noisy powered tools or are exposed to noises arising from impacts e.g. pneumatic impact tools are most at risk to developing hearing loss due to exposure to excess noises.
Jobs and industries most likely to involve noise include:
- General fabrication
- Demolition or road repair
- Forging, pressing or stamping
- Paper or board making
- Plastics processing
- Canning or bottling
Tools and equipment that can cause hearing loss include:
- Drop forging
- Pneumatic impact tools etc
- Explosive sources
Claiming compensation for Noise Induced Hearing Loss
The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 were introduced in April 2006 to better protect workers from occupational noise but there are many workers in the UK who have been exposed to excessive noise in the workplace prior to this time. If you have been diagnosed with noise induced hearing loss or tinnitus and this can be shown to be caused by exposure to excess noise in the workplace, you may be able to claim for compensation.
At Industrial Deafness Claims, we believe that you have a right to justice and are entitled to compensation for your hearing loss from your employer. We will assess your claim and appoint a solicitor who will put together evidence and refer you to an independent medical expert. Our industrial deafness solicitors are dedicated to getting you the best possible compensation.