A Sheffield sheet metal worker who developed vibration white finger as a result of his employer’s negligence has received £7000 compensation.

The 58-year-old developed the injury through his work grinding and hammering on metal slides for up to three hours a day. In his 26 years on the job he was never once warned about the risk of developing vibration white finger.

He is now expected to suffer from the effects of the injury for the rest of his life.

Vibration White Finger is an industrial injury

Vibration White Finger is an industrial injury that can include symptoms such as tingling and numbness in the fingertips, a cold sensation in the fingers, discolouration of the skin and aches and pains in the hands, arms and fingers.

“It’s had a huge effect on my life”, he says. “The pain’s at its worst in the cold and the dampness so I’ve had to stop the fishing and the gardening and pack up my football coaching. Even going out to watch a match in the winter is more than I can handle now.”

The GMB member sought medical attention for his injuries, but when his GP failed to recognise his symptoms he sought advice from his union.

His GMB organiser immediately recognised the symptoms as vibration white finger and the union agreed to fund a compensation claim with personal injury specialists Thompsons Solicitors.

Vibration white finger caused by overuse of vibratory tools

Thompsons gathered expert medical evidence proving his injuries were vibration white finger caused by overuse of vibratory tools. The company quickly admitted liability for the injuries and agreed to a compensation settlement.

Jeremy Hague from Thompsons Solicitors said: “The employer in this case failed in its duty to limit our client’s exposure to vibration, rotate his work or even warn him about the risks. I’m pleased he has received the compensation he deserves.”

Tim Roache, GMB Yorkshire Regional Secretary, said: “Health and safety laws exist to make sure workers aren’t injured on the job. Where employers fail to abide by these laws it’s in everybody’s interest that they are held to account. The GMB will always stand by members who’ve been injured at work and back them in their fight for justice.”

The GMB member said: “I think Jeremy at Thompsons has handled my case very well and it’s nice for someone to do something for you. I’m also very grateful for the GMB taking up my case and supporting me all the way.”

He continues to be employed at the manufacturing company.