During the Industrial Revolution, disease accounted for countless deaths in industrial cities throughout Britain. Due to a chronic lack of hygiene, little understanding of sanitary care and no knowledge as to what caused life threatening conditions, let alone cure them, diseases brought about by the industrial environment could be devastating.
Sadly, industrial diseases among workers are still prevalent in this day and age. Asbestos, mesothelioma, respiratory conditions, vibration white finger and skin diseases affect today’s workers with the Health and Safety Executive estimating that approximately 3,000 employees die each year as a result of exposure to asbestos products.
Termed as medical conditions resulting from prolonged exposure to an occupational hazard in the workplace, industrial diseases have an enormous impact on their victims – physically, emotionally and financially. This occupational hazard varies according to the type of work carried out. It could be due to exposure to a hazardous substance, such as dust or fumes, a harmful activity such as using a vibrating tool or even a dangerous environment, such as one that is excessively loud.
Many industrial disease claimants are unaware that their health problems stem from their occupation and an industrial injury claim often involves the detailed investigation of an individual’s work history. For example, those who have worked with vibrating tools may suffer numbness and reduced dexterity in their fingers and hands and workers who experience a chronic shortage of breath may not attribute their condition to their occupation.
Whilst there are many different types of industrial disease, some of the most well-known relate to exposure to asbestos. Other examples may include, dermatitis, various respiratory and lung diseases as well as occupational asthma and cancer. Whatever the symptoms or condition, industrial diseases can have a devastating effect on the lives of those who suffer from them and their families.
Employers are legally obliged to take responsibility for the safety of their staff, and may be proved to be negligent if they have not provided a safe working environment, or neglected to enforce the mandatory requirement to wear protective clothing and eliminate any occupational hazards. Therefore, if you have developed an illness or disease because your employer exposed you to something harmful, you could be entitled to compensation. Furthermore, you may also prevent someone else becoming ill in the same way.
Due to their nature, industrial disease claims are often more complicated than pursuing personal injury litigation. The cause of the illness or injury may have occurred years earlier and expert medical advice may be needed to prove a link between employment and the illness. However, you don’t have to go through this on your own. As specialists in this area of law, we have helped countless victims of various industrial diseases to make that link and secure the compensation needed to improve their personal circumstances.
Speak to one of our soliciitors who will be happy to explain your available options, which include a ‘conditional fee agreement’. This means, if you’re claim is unsuccessful; you won’t have to spend a penny. If your compensation claim is straightforward, your claim could be resolved in months. More complex industrial disease claims typically take months, sometimes even years. However, we will always endeavour to ensure that you receive the maximum amount of compensation in the shortest possible time whilst keeping court costs to an absolute minimum.
As with any compensation claim, the severity of your condition, any loss of earnings due to time off work and fees spent on medical treatment will determine the amount of compensation you receive. Whatever your personal circumstances, we will always be open and transparent about the likelihood of your case being successful and fight your corner every step of the way.
Are you happy with the way your compensation claim is currently being handled? Even if your claim has recently settled we may still be able to review your case, read more here.
If you think you may be the victim of an industrial disease, give us a call or complete our online enquiry form, to see how our private client solicitors can help. We have offices in Telford, Shrewsbury, Oswestry, Ludlow, Bromyard and Hereford so are able to act for clients all over the UK.
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