A Lancashire man has been awarded substantial compensation of £25,000 following a diagnosis of hearing loss and tinnitus caused by his past work in the merchant navy.
Brian Cato, 66, was diagnosed with noise induced hearing loss and severe tinnitus in 2014. He suffers daily problems with his hearing and will now need hearing aids.
He worked as a marine engineer in the 1970s and 1980s with BP and Silver Line. In these jobs, he worked in the engine rooms of company ships and was constantly exposed to extremely high levels of noise for engines and boilers. He was not given any hearing protection or warned of the dangers of noise exposure.
Following the diagnosis, he contacted his trade union, who instructed work related disease specialist lawyers, OH Parsons, to pursue a compensation claim on Mr Cato’s behalf.
Mr Cato said: “At first my wife complained that I had put the volume on the television too high. I noticed some difficulty in conversations but thought that people were mumbling. I noticed then a loud whistling sound in my ears which was annoying and affected my sleep. I was shocked to learn that these problems were due to my work many years before.”
The Trade Union spokesperson said: “Industrial deafness is a debilitating condition which affects every aspect of someone’s life. It is an invisible problem which can have a terrible effect on relationships and everyday communication. It is common not to notice this until years after the noise exposure. We are pleased to have been able to assist our member recover the compensation to which he was legally entitled.”
Simon Matthews, Work Related Disease Lawyer, from OH Parsons said: “Mr Cato’s hearing loss was avoidable. Hearing problems are commonly put down to getting older. People do not always associate this with their previous work. Mr Cato’s employers were legally obliged to protect him against the dangers of noise exposure.”
If you feel you have suffered from hearing loss as a direct cause from your place of work, please do get in touch with our Work Related Disease team now on 0800 526 368 and one of our solicitors will be happy to assist or alternatively please email [email protected]