Eyes Injuries due to welding
One of the most common injuries is to the eyes. In December last year, a welder won a five-year battle for compensation with his former bosses after his face was blown off by an exploding oil drum. The welder was slicing the drum with a plasma cutter when the drum exploded, destroying his face and leaving him completely blind.
Arc welding uses electricity which can adversely affect the eye when ultraviolet or infrared light ‘burns’ the eye. Sparks can also be extremely dangerous if the worker is not wearing appropriate protective headgear. It’s recommended that workers should use helper glasses underneath their welding hood if necessary.
Hearing loss hazards in the Welding Industry
Welding itself is not very noisy however the environments that many welders work in usually contain loud equipment and tools. If someone is within close proximity for long periods of time this could increase the likeliness of Noise Induced Hearing Loss.
Not only are many welders exposed to high-pitched and excessively loud noises, they are also vulnerable to inhaling the fumes created during the process, which can also affect the inner ear.
Welders should wear appropriate ear-defending protection and should limit the length of time spent in an excessively noisy environment.
Ringing and buzzing (tinnitus) can be a common sign of hearing loss caused by noise damage as well as missing parts of conversation or having the television on loud.
If you do have any concerns, Roberts Jackson can provide you with a FREE hearing test** and assist you in making a compensation claim against the person responsible.
Typical Hearing Loss Compensation Amounts
• Mild Tinnitus or Hearing Loss – £3,000 to £7,000
• Moderate Tinnitus or Hearing Loss – £7,000 to £10,000
• Severe Tinnitus or Hearing Loss – £10,000 to £20,000*
**Free Hearing test subject to case acceptance
Occupational Asthma in Welders and Other Respiratory Conditions
It is all too common for welders to inhale particles which can affect them in numerous ways. Occupational asthma is common place in welders due to the fumes that are inhaled if the correct protective equipment is not provided by employers. Compensation is also available to anyone who already has asthma but whose symptoms have been made worse by their occupation.
Certain fumes can also cause lung diseases like siderosis, pneumoconiosis and Welder’s lung. Lesser-known conditions like ‘metal fume fever’ which has flu-like symptoms, along with bronchitis can also be common in the welding trade.
Manganese, which is released in welding arc fumes, has been shown to cause a type of illness similar to Parkinson’s disease. Currently there is not enough medicolegal evidence to prove this and it is not possible to bring a claim for this.
It is the duty of Welders’ employers to ensure there is proportionate ventilation, that workers are not exposed for long periods, and that they are wearing appropriate safety gear. If personal protective equipment is not provided and enforced then there could be a breach of duty and workers may have a claim against their employer if they are affected.
If you believe work has caused or exacerbated a breathing, condition, you should visit your GP but we would also advise you inform your employer so they can take measures to assist you and prevent further exposure. Roberts Jackson Solicitors are on hand to provide FREE legal advice ranging from – running a No Win No Fee claim to assistance with state benefits that may be owed to you.
Typical Compensation Amounts for Occupational Asthma
• Mild Asthma, Breathing Issues – Up to £3,400
• Relatively Mild Symptoms – £7,000 to £12,000
• Bronchitis and Wheezing – £12,000 to £17,000
• Chronic Asthma – £17,000 to £28,000
• Severe Disabling Asthma – £28,000 to £43,000*
*All compensation amounts based on the Judicial College guidelines (formerly the Judicial Studies Board guidelines)