Noise Induced Hearing Loss

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By Grace Hickman

on Friday 15 December 2017

nightclub sound system

Noise induced hearing loss can result from long term exposure in the workplace or possibly from a sudden event or accident that caused sensory loss. 

An explosion, inadequate distance from a speaker at a concert, head trauma or an accident can cause deafness and tinnitus. Importantly, if you think the cause of your hearing loss was not your fault then you can claim compensation to help mitigate your suffering and losses. 

What is Noise-Induced Hearing Loss?

People are surrounded by various levels of noise on a daily and weekly basis and the majority of the time, they are safe. However, the exposure to noise at work is one of the main contributing factors towards Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL); hearing impairment caused by loud sound exposure. It can bring on a variety of hearing conditions.

Types of hearing damage and loss

Hearing loss can be permanent or temporary but the severity also relies on what type of hearing damage you have incurred. The types of hearing loss are typically categorised into the following:

Work related hearing loss

Research carried out by the Health and Safety Executive confirms that in recent years, around 20,000 people have suffered from work-based hearing issues, including Noise Induced Hearing Loss. This suggests that many employers aren’t complying with the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005, or that they aren’t aware of the limits and taking necessary measures to protect employees from loud noise, be it occasionally or on a more regular basis.

NIHL can be recognised instantly or it can take a lot longer to develop and it can be temporary or permanent loss in one or both ears. Many people are unaware that they may have developed hearing impairments because of a negligent employer. If you think that you, or anyone you know, may have suffered from Noise Induced Hearing Loss due to an exposure of sound at work, get in touch with us at Accident Line Direct to find out if you/they can make a NIHL claim to receive compensation.

Causes of work related NIHL

In certain workplaces, people can endure a one-off exposure to loud noise, such as an explosion. Or they could be open to more continuous ear-damaging sounds; for those working in places such as workshops, factories or construction sites and using or being around loud tools or machinery.

Your employer has a 'duty of care' to protect you from any hearing impairment and should be carrying out regular, sufficient health and safety risk assessments to ensure your safety. While some damage is temporary, it could also be irreversible with life-lasting effects.

Occupations where workers are at risk of Noise Induced Hearing Loss are mainly those that involve noise levels of above 80 decibels. Some jobs include:

  • Building or road construction/maintenance
  • Engineers
  • Operating work vehicles
  • Insulation Installers
  • Electricians
  • Bar and Nightclub staff

There are many more industries that could put employees at risk of NIHL, so if you’re unsure or want information on whether or not you have a claim, contact Accident Line Direct for free advice on NIHL claims.

Causes of sudden hearing damage and loss

Your hearing damage may not have occured in the workplace, in which case there may be a sudden cause for your hearing loss where you weren't exposed to noisy levels on a long term basis.

Head trauma causing hearing loss

If you were involved in an accident that caused sudden hearing loss or damage (like tinnitus) due to head trauma then you are still able to make a claim for compensaiton. You must be able to show that the person responsible could resonably have prevented your personal harm. 

Public event causing hearing damage

If you were near a sudden explosion or you were stood too close to speakers at a concernt and were unable to move then you can make a claim for compensation provided someone was at fault (that wasn't yourself.)

Below are some guidline payout amounts for deafness and tinnitus cases.

Severity Compensation
Impairment of Taste and Smell£15,300 to £31,220
Partial Hearing Loss and/or Tinnitus£5,870 to £36,310
Total Loss of Hearing in One Ear£24,950 to £36,310
Total Deafness£72,330 to £87,410
Total Deafness and Loss of Speech£87,410 to £112,100

How can I make a Noise Induced Hearing Loss Claim?

The process of making a claim for Noise Induced Hearing Loss compensation must occur within three years of:

  • The date the event took place whereby you were exposed to a loud sound that caused hearing impairment, or
  • The date that you recognised a symptom of NIHL that was caused by exposure to noise at work.

You do not need an official NIHL diagnosis to make a claim for compensation, however, your injury solicitor will carry out a Noise Induced Hearing Loss audiogram, to inspect whether your hearing impairment is due to age, noise or any other possible factors. This will then be used as the first step towards potential success in your NIHL claim. The more severe the damage, the higher the compensation amount you could receive.

Depending on the severity of the Noise Induced Hearing Loss condition, from Tinnitus to total deafness, compensation payouts can range from £3,000 to £70,000*, helping the Claimant to cover a variety of expenses, such as the costs of hearing aids, treatment or possible loss of earnings.

No Win No Fee NIHL Claim

Accident Line Direct will work in your favour by following a No Win No Fee claims policy. If you are successful in gaining compensation after making a Noise Induced Hearing Loss claim, the injury lawyer will charge a 25% fee of your total amount received. If the claim is unsuccessful, then you will not incur any fees. With this in place, we eliminate the possibility of any financial risks, making the process stress-free for you.

How can Accident Line Direct help with making a claim for Noise Induced Hearing Loss?

If you have suffered work-related noise induced hearing loss and are at all unsure about whether you are able to claim for compensation, or you just need further information, our team of expert advisors at Accident Line Direct is available to give you expert help and advice.

0808 1454275

Accident Line Direct can help you begin your potential claim, get in touch today!

*This information is taken from the Judicial College Guidelines and it is important to note that they are estimates only. It is possible that you may fall outside of these guidelines, depending on your compensation level. Contact Accident Line Direct to get more specific advice on your NIHL claim.