Victim Joins Specialist Lawyers In Call For Better Protection From Excessive Noise
By Dave Grimshaw
A former machine operator and crane driver has called for employers to take better precautions to protect workers exposed to excessive noise after receiving a settlement for his long term hearing damage.
Oswald Grant, 73, from Pudsey, was exposed to high levels of noise while working at Yorkshire Imperial Metals which later became IMI Yorkshire Alloys Ltd between 1963 and 1997.
He was employed as a pump operator and later became a crane driver in areas where there was loud machinery being used while he was loading from the crane.
He instructed specialist workplace illness lawyers at Irwin Mitchell who secured him a settlement of £6,000 after evidence revealed that he was not provided with ear protection for a number of years during his employment.
As well as hearing loss, Mr Grant also suffers with a constant buzzing noise in both ears which has been diagnosed as Tinnitus, a common condition caused by noise exposure.
Sarah Tagg, a hearing loss expert at Irwin Mitchell representing him, said: “Simply by going to work and doing his job every day Mr Grant has been left with damaged hearing and also suffers from tinnitus.
“For many years at work he was exposed to loud noises but he wasn’t given the proper protection and it is now having an adverse affect on his lifestyle. This could have been easily prevented had he been given the proper ear protection earlier in his career.
“Employers must ensure they take all necessary and appropriate precautions to protect their workers from injury.”
Mr Grant lives with his wife and has five children with five grandchildren who live across the country. He says keeping in touch with them via the phone is now more difficult since his hearing loss.
Mr Grant said: “While we were working it was so loud we would have to shout and often use hand signals even though my colleagues were only a few feet away. But we were only given ear protection later on in my employment.
“It’s only now that I realise how much of an affect the noise had as my hearing has started deteriorating. If there is any background noise I struggle to hold conversations and I have to have the TV turned up really loud. It can be quite upsetting really and sometimes my family and friends think I’m just ignoring them.
“I’ve been told that because of working in a noisy environment without protection that I will have to wear a hearing aid seven years earlier than I would normally have to. I just hope businesses improve conditions and protect workers so that others don’t have to suffer in future.”
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.