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Man Let Down By Employer Speaks Out

Lawyer Urges Employers To ‘Take Health And Safety Seriously



A retired Maintenance Fitter whose former employer failed to provide him with protective safety equipment for part of his career causing permanent hearing damage has spoken out to help prevent other workers from suffering ‘avoidable’ injuries.

With help from industrial deafness experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell, 62-year-old Raymond Evans  from Port Talbot, West Glamorgan, has been awarded a four figure settlement from his past employer as through no fault of his own he suffers reduced hearing in both ears and has to wear hearing aids years earlier than he would have normally.

Raymond suffered his injuries during his work at Port Talbot Steelworks where he was employed by William Press and Son Ltd - now known as Amec Offshore Ltd - as a maintenance fitter then supervisor between 1969 and 2007.

He was not provided with hearing protection until the mid 1980s by which time he had been exposed to high levels of noise from blast furnaces, mills, lathes, grinders and borers, causing irreparable damage to his hearing.

Sarah Tagg, an Industrial Deafness expert who has
helped Raymond in his battle for justice, said: “Raymond was not provided with ear protection throughout all of his working life. This has meant that, through no fault of his own, he’s been left with partial, permanent deafness which affects his day to day routine.

“To prevent future workers from suffering this type of wholly avoidable injury, I’d urge employers to take health and safety of their employers seriously, to ensure that noise exposure in workplaces is kept to a minimum and crucially to ensure ear protection is provided for employers for the duration of their careers.”

Commenting on his injury, Raymond said "When I first started to notice my hearing problems, like struggling to hear the doorbell ring, the TV, or even chatting with people face to face, I didn’t think it was related to work I’d done years ago. I thought it was just part and parcel of getting older.

“It’s so frustrating to think that simple steps could have been taken that could have protected me, that wouldn’t mean I’ll have to struggle with my hearing for the rest of my life.

“I hope by speaking out about my story employers will be encouraged to provide safety equipment to their employees and for workers to speak out if they think they’re not being properly looked after.”

Anyone who has an enquiry about a potential industrial hearing loss case should contact Sarah Tagg at Irwin Mitchell LLP on 0114 2744355 or email sarah.tagg@irwinmitchell.com.