Vision and Hearing Loss a Work
You may file a workers’ compensation claim if you have sustained vision or hearing loss—either partial or complete—in the workplace. Vision and hearing loss can occur at work due to a wide array of causes, from exposure to chemicals to illness.
Exposure to harmful levels of light, exposure to harmful chemicals, and trauma to the brain can cause vision loss at work. Even when workers wear protective eyewear, accidents or repetitive exposure can cause either partial or complete vision loss. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), most eye injuries at work are caused by debris (such as gravel, splinters, and sand) hitting the eye. BLS also reported that almost 30,000 non-fatal eye injuries lead to time lost at work each year.
Most work-related hearing loss is occupational, not traumatic; damage to the ear, either temporary or permanent, is sustained from repetitive exposure to harmful noise levels or chemicals, as opposed to one, extreme event (e.g. working in a loud factory for 20 years, as opposed to experiencing a singular loud bang). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), each year in the U.S., approximately 22 million workers are exposed to hazardous noise levels at work, and over 30 million workers are exposed to chemicals that are harmful to the ear at work. According to Healthy Hearing, those with manufacturing, construction, entertainment, military and agricultural careers are particularly at risk for hearing loss. While hearing loss can be disheartening and frightening, there are treatments and solutions available—from therapy with hearing loss professionals to hearing aids and other listening devices.
Even if your vision or hearing loss does not cause complete disability (the inability to work), you may still be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.
Feel free to contact the law offices of Gilbert, Blaszcyk & Milburn for a free consultation on your possible claim.