Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) is an entirely preventable industrial injury, which, sadly, once developed, is permanent and can have a serious and debilitating impact on a sufferer’s independence and quality of life.
HAVS is caused by exposure to excessive vibration in the workplace, usually from power tools and vibrating machinery such as saws, pneumatic drills, grinders, and other equipment.
Although the precise pathology of the illness is not understood, it is generally thought that excessive vibration damages the function of nerves and blood cells, with prolonged use resulting in cumulative effect.
Numbness, tingling and pain are all consistent with Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome. Together, these symptoms may result in significant loss of dexterity, which can have a major impact, both professionally and domestically.
Symptoms can be particularly severe in cold weather. Performing even simple tasks, such as doing up the buttons on a shirt, may prove impossible.
The answer to this question is a resounding “yes”. By taking simple steps such as maintaining tools, providing anti-vibration gloves, monitoring vibration levels, ensuring regular breaks and controlling workplace temperature, employers should be able to protect employees from ever developing this painful and distressing industrial injury.
In fact, under health and safety law and the Control of Vibration and Work Regulations, employers have a duty to protect workers. A duty which, if flouted, may lead to liability for compensation claims.
If you have developed HAVS after using vibrating tools in the workplace, you may have strong grounds for claiming compensation.
Our plain English legal service empowers claimants to secure the full compensation they deserve. Speak to a specialist on our team today for more information.