Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS)
Unfortunately, accidents at work can happen – but sometimes just doing your job can lead to injury.
If you use or have used vibrating tools or machinery at work such as pneumatic drills or jackhammers or chainsaws, you may be one of the two million people estimated by the Health and Safety Executive to be at risk of developing symptoms. Those symptoms can be very serious, including numbness in the fingers, muscle weakness and ‘white finger’- often leaving sufferers unable to work and losing money. This condition is commonly referred to as Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome, or HAVS for short.
Who can claim compensation for Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome?
Lots of people have been affected by HAVS – workers in these industries have claimed (but there are many more examples):
- Heavy engineering
- Road maintenance and building
- Ground works
- Foundry work
These are the common types of machinery used which lead to HAVS:
- Power drills
- Pneumatic drills
- Chain saw
- Nut guns
- Powered wrenches
Employers are usually deemed to know of the risk of using vibrating equipment since 1976 – so as long as you worked after that date, you should be able to claim. However, if you are in any doubt you should contact us and we can advise you, free of charge and without obligation.
What are the symptoms?
We know how painful and disabling HAVS can be – typical symptoms are as follows:
- Pins and needles or tingling sensations in your fingers
- Whiteness of the fingers or thumbs
Symptoms tend to start in the tips of your fingers or sometimes thumbs, and then move along the finger or thumb. You may experience reduction of grip or strength and loss of dexterity, so that everyday things like tying shoe laces and fastening buttons become difficult. Cold can often make things worse.
HAVS usually develops whilst you are working with vibrating tools, or within 2 years of stopping to use them. Sadly, once your symptoms are present, they are permanent.
How can we help?
We are committed to helping clients who have developed HAVS – we have dealt with many claims before and we know how to succeed, and what arguments to use to get the compensation you deserve.
Employers have a duty to ensure that it is safe for you to use equipment needed to do your job. They should give you regular breaks to limit the time spent on the machinery or tools. They should change the work process (introduce a rotating shift pattern for example) or modify the tools (altering the grip can help), and you should have regular medical reviews.
Often employers don’t do what they should do to prevent injury – so we can help you recover the injury compensation you are entitled to, and recover your out of pocket expenses.
Genuine no win no fee service
We offer a genuine no win no fee service which means that if you lose your claim, you don’t pay anything.