Vibration White Finger
Vibration White Finger (VWF), or as it is now known, Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) is caused as a result of regular exposure to excessive levels of vibration, transmitted via pneumatic tools, through the hands.
Call us on 0344 854 7000 or submit your details below and we’ll call you back for a free, initial no-obligation assessment of your personal injury claim.
What are the symptoms of Vibration White Finger?
Vibration White Finger (VWF/HAVS) is a permanent condition that causes damage to the nerves, blood vessels and the joints of the arms, hands and wrists, through working for extended periods of time with vibrating tools. Symptoms include:
• Loss of feeling or sensation
• Pins and needles in the fingers
• Blanching (whiteness or blueish colour) of the hands and fingers
• Loss of strength and dexterity
• Throbbing and swelling in the fingers
The symptoms usually occur in, but are not limited to, cold weather. Symptoms are not always present but usually happen during ‘flare-ups’, which can last from 15 minutes to as long as 1 hour. Sensation in the fingers is lost and this can cause loss of manipulative dexterity and the ability to undertake fine work.
Who is at risk of developing Vibration White Finger?
People who work regularly with pneumatic hand-held tools and equipment including the below are most at risk of developing VWF/HAVS:
• Power hammers, chisels and pneumatic drills
• Concrete breakers and concrete pokers
• Powered sanders, angle grinders and disc cutters
• Chainsaws and jigsaws
• Lawn mowers, hedge trimmers and strimmers
What is my employers responsibility?
Employers are legally obliged to protect the health and safety of their employees in the workplace. The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005 was put in place to protect workers from developing VWF. Employers should implement the following measures to minimise the risks of their staff developing the condition by providing them with:
• Anti-vibration gloves
• Training on the use of pneumatic tools
• The correct tools for the job
• Regular breaks from using vibrating tools and equipment
• A work environment that is kept to a reasonable temperature
If your employer has failed to implement the above measures and you develop VWF as a result, then it could be possible to make a vibration white finger claim.
How to avoid Vibration White Finger?
In order to avoid developing Vibration White Finger it is advisable to:
- Use low-vibration tools if possible.
- Take regular breaks when using vibrating tools.
- Wear anti-vibration gloves.
- Keep your hands warm whilst at work.
- Encourage blood circulation through keeping warm and massaging/exercising fingers during breaks.
What is the time limit for making a claim?
Vibration White Finger claims must be made within three years from the date in which you became aware that your condition has developed or been made worse due to your work.
How much compensation will I get?
Vibration White Finger compensation differs depending on the individual circumstances of your case are taken into account when quantifying your claim. The amount will depend on factors such as:
• The severity of your further health complications.
• How your life has been affected by your illness.
• Your future care and support needs.
• Financial losses, including how much money you have lost or will lose as a result of your condition (e.g. loss of earnings, travel expenses).
How to start making a Vibration White Finger claim?
If you suspect that you have developed Vibration White Finger as a result of your work, contact us on 0344 854 7000 or submit an online enquiry to start the claims process.
Our friendly First Response Team will ask you a series of questions to establish the circumstances surrounding your case. This will be examined by one of our industrial disease solicitors to determine if you have a valid case. We will contact you to advise you if we can take on your case or not.
If you choose to instruct us as your solicitor we will start to collect evidence to prove your case, quantify your claim and present this to the third party responsible.
How much will it cost to make a claim?
True Solicitors will handle your claim on a No Win, No Fee basis, meaning that there are no upfront costs to pay.
We offer a free initial, no obligation assessment of your case. Contact us on 0344 854 7000 or submit your details via our online enquiry form and we’ll call you back.