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Mr R became aware of problems with his hearing gradually over the last 3 to 4 years, primarily because his family pointed out to him that the volume of the television is too high and that he sometimes mishears what is said to him. He thought that the deterioration in his hearing was part and parcel of getting older.
In October 2009, Mr R went for a hearing test and was surprised to be told that the deterioration in his hearing was probably due in part to exposure to noise. The only noise exposure that Mr R was aware of was exposure many years ago at work.
Mr R contacted Irwin Mitchell to make a claim for noise Induced hearing loss against his former employer Hickson & Welch, in West Yorkshire.
His claim has recently settled, without the need for court proceedings, for a four figure sum
Mr R recalls: "In 1969 I started at Hickson & Welch Ltd, as a chemical worker. I worked at 2 shift system of 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. In the later years I worked 12 hour shifts, 4 days on and 4 days off.
"Part of my time at Hickson & Welch (probably about 5 years) was spent operating the ‘Baker’ machines, these machines had steel bars inside that rotated and dropped. There were 3 Baker machines and they were large machines; 6 feet long and 6 feet in diameter.
"The Baker machines made such a loud noise that you couldn’t hear over them, to communicate we used hand signals.
"In about the mid-1990s hearing protection, ear plugs and ear muffs were provided and I wore them for comfort. Around the same time my employers started giving us hearing tests but as far as I remember I was never given the result of the tests."
Louise Scott, a solicitor who specialises in claims for noise induced hearing loss at our Birmingham office, acted on behalf of Mr A. and said:
“This was an interesting claim; Mr R was such a good witness and able to recollect exactly where he worked in the factory and we were able to prove his excessive exposure to noise using noise level surveys carried out by his former employers.”
If you or a loved one has suffered from hearing damage such as acoustic shock, tinnitus, and noise-induced hearing loss caused by conditions at work our solicitors could help you claim compensation. See our Industrial Disease Claims page for more information.
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