Posted on: 30 April 2015
If you work with heavy machinery or in an environment polluted with loud noise, your ears may suffer as a result of continued exposure. If this is left to continue, you may suffer from what is known as industrial deafness. Depending on your circumstances, you may be entitled to make a claim against your employer for any injuries suffered.
What are the Symptoms of Industrial Deafness?
High levels of noise in the workplace can cause a number of symptoms if you are exposed to it for significant lengths of time. However, if the problem is persistent even when away from the noise source, then it could be signs of industrial deafness.
If you are suffering from any one the symptoms below, then you should seek medical advice in order to assess the extent of your damage:
- Difficulty of hearing in either or both ears that doesn't go away when the ear is cleaned.
- Temporary loss of hearing that comes and goes in short bursts.
- Having to turn your radio, television or computer up to near-max levels in order to hear the sound from your speakers.
- A complete lack of hearing in either or both ears.
While the above symptoms could be down to an underlying medical issue, it is highly likely that industrial deafness is the problem if you are exposed to high noise levels throughout your day-to-day life.
Industrial deafness is also associated with other medical problems that can occur independently of the condition. As such, they can often be misdiagnosed if your doctor is unaware of your working environment. Two such conditions are:
- Acoustic Trauma – a form of deafness that occurs as a result of sudden, loud noises such as gun fire. These explosive sounds damage the eardrum causing a loss of hearing.
- Tinnitus – Persistent ringing or buzzing in the ear that does not go away over time.
What Steps Should I Take to Make a Claim?
If you believe your industrial deafness occurred as a result of improper working conditions, you may be entitled to make a claim. When filing a claim, there are a number of factors that the courts will take into consideration. The legislation varies between each state; however, there are a few things you must have in place before filing your claim.
The first thing to do is ensure that you have a medical report outlining the extent of your injuries. This is important as it gives the courts tangible evidence that your injuries have impacted on your day-to-day life and allows them to quantify your damages. When filing a claim, you must have a valid medical report signed off by a recognized doctor. Additionally, your doctor should outline what they believe to be the cause of the problem, rather than simply stating that you have ear trauma.
Once this is in place, you have to start accumulating evidence that your injury was caused by employer negligence. This is particularly tricky to do as you have to convince the courts that your trauma isn't attributable to anything else. One of the best pieces of evidence you can obtain are witness statements from your colleagues outlining your working conditions and any problems they have experienced. This helps the court to realize that you aren't alone in your injury and that your co-workers have experienced similar issues.
In addition to evidence backing up your claims, you also have to source evidence that your employer was aware of the environment causing injury and could have taken steps to prevent it. This is the hardest one to prove but is vitally important as it shows that the problem was a result of negligence rather than accident.
To learn more, contact a company like http://www.sarklawfirm.com/ with any questions or concerns you have.Share