Vibration White Finger is a condition suffered mainly by employees working with heavy machinery that causes numerous issues in arms, wrists and hands. It causes issues with blood vessels, nerves, blood vessels and the joints. The major problem with vibration white finger is that although it is possible to prevent, it’s impossible to cure once it has been diagnosed.
Vibration white finger can cause loss of use or the restricted use of fingers or the whole hand, fingers can change colour or numbness and tingling in the hands and it is usually caused by the continuous use of vibrating equipment such as chainsaws, hammer drills, concrete breakers and disc cutters. Employers should assess the use of vibrating equipment as using a low vibrating tool over a long period could cause vibration white finger more than using a high vibrating tool for a short period.
At Legal Helpline we have a specialist team of personal injury solicitors who can file a vibration white finger claim for you right away.
If you believe your employer is to blame for your vibration white finger injury in any way or have been negligent in dealing with it after you highlighted a problem to them then we can help you to claim against them. If you want to claim now, then call us on 0161 696 9685 and we’ll begin your free consultation.
If you want to know more about the impact and effects of vibration white finger and what compensation you can claim for then keep reading, this guide should give you all of the information to make an informed decision about whether to make a compensation claim for vibration white finger and what amount of compensation you may receive.
Select A Section
- A Guide To Making A Claim For Vibration White Finger Compensation
- What Causes VWF And Hand Arm Vibration Injuries?
- Advice, Statistics, And Vibration Injury Prevention
- You Have Been Diagnosed With Vibration White Finger, What Should You Do?
- Common Tools And Jobs That Can Lead To Vibration White Finger
- How To Make A Claim For White Finger Compensation
- What Can You Claim For If You Have VWF?
- Vibration White Finger Compensation Calculator
- No Win No Fee VWF Solicitors
- Why Claim With Legal Helpline
- Call Our Team Now For Free VWF Claims Advice
- Helpful Resources
A Guide To Making A Claim For Vibration White Finger (VWF) Compensation
When using machinery or tools at work that vibrates, you are at risk from vibration white finger. Even low vibration tools, if used for too long, can lead to vibration white finger claims and employers have a duty of care to all employers to ensure that the risk of vibration white finger is removed as much as possible. The control of vibration at work regulations 2005 were introduced to ensure employers protected their employees from the risks of vibration white finger and similar syndromes like Raynaud’s Syndrome.
Unfortunately, not all employers take the risks seriously and ask staff to carry on regardless which is why some employees have successfully made vibration white finger compensation claims and vibration injury claims as a way of compensating them for the injuries at work that they’ve sustained and, very often, permanent damage to their bodies.
You may have seen the same injury referred to as Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (or HAVS), this is just the term personal injury solicitors use to describe vibration white finger (which will refer to it as in this document or sometimes VWF).
This guide will give you a fuller knowledge of vibration white finger: the causes, the effects, how to prevent it and how to claim compensation for it. If there is anything that you’re not sure about, having read this article, contact us and we’ll happily answer any questions you may have about vibration white finger, Raynaud’s Syndrome, HAVS or any other linked condition.
What Causes VWF And Hand Arm Vibration Injuries?
The vibration of machines used at work such as: Concrete cutters, chainsaws, angle grinders or pneumatic drills can cause vibration white finger and even more so in cold conditions. Any tool that, when being operated, causes tingling or numbness in the hand could cause vibration white finger.
When using these types of tools your body can cope with the tiny damage done when using them once or twice, but the serious damage can be done if you’re using the tools every day, over a long period and even more so if you’re working in cold conditions.
The actual medical cause of vibration white finger is the damage to nerves and vessels in the fingers caused by every vibration. Individually the damage from a vibration is unlikely to be significant but when the same damage is being done to the vessels and nerves every day, over a prolonged period, then vibration white finger becomes permanent and can’t be undone.
If you think that the job you’re doing now, using vibrating equipment, is likely to cause damage or vibration white finger if you continue to do it over a long period then we’d advise you to inform your employer of your concerns. They may already have conducted risk assessments or have plans in place to prevent vibration white finger being a problem for you.
Advice, Statistics, And Vibration Injury Prevention
The Health and Safety Executive have a list of suggestions that can prevent the onset of vibration white finger which employers should be aware of as regulations are in place already to prevent VWF. If you think you’re at risk then you could:
- Suggest that your employer provides low vibration tools
- Check tools frequently to ensure they are maintained well (a blunt cutting tool, for instance, would take longer to do the job and therefore more vibration would occur)
- Reduce how long you use the same tool for, split your time between jobs.
- Don’t grip too hard if you don’t have to
- Keep tools stored somewhere warm as cold handles have been shown to increase the risk of vibration white finger.
- Keep the blood circulating well in your hands by: massaging and exercising your fingers, try to give up smoking as this is bad for blood flow and keep dry and warm with hats, gloves and waterproofs.
In general, it is advisable to work with your employer, where possible, to suggest improvements to help reduce the risk of vibration white finger and if you think you’re suffering the symptoms of vibration white finger then you should let your employer aware immediately.
You Have Been Diagnosed With Vibration White Finger, What Should You Do?
If you’ve been to medical professional, completed the vibration white finger tests and been diagnosed with vibration white finger then you are probably eligible for white finger compensation.
Even if the diagnosis was completed by your employer’s own doctor or occupational health team we can still consider your case, we may get a second opinion from another medical professional in this instance.
There are steps you should take to improve the case against your employer that we recommend including:
- Tell your employer. This will enable them to make changes if you’re still able to work and some cases of vibration white finger must be reported to the health and safety executive under RIDDOR regulations.
- Keep notes on how you think the problem has occurred and, if possible, keep copies of any emails or conversations you’ve had with your employer previously about working conditions.
- Seek medical advice. As mentioned above there are vibration white finger tests that medical professionals will complete to confirm the diagnosis.
- If you do need any immediate time off work or incur medical costs, then try to keep receipts as evidence of your financial loss.
- If possible photograph the equipment you’ve been using as evidence of which models were used, their state of repair and also record how long each day you would use them for.
If you are continuing to work following your diagnosis, then ask your employer to move you on to different duties as the symptoms of vibration white finger could get worse if the same job is carried out post-diagnosis.
With all personal injury claims evidence is really important for your claim: photographs, videos, emails, letters and receipts are all useful as well as the medical evidence and statements we’ll gather on your behalf. If you don’t have all of the above then don’t worry as we may still be able to proceed with your case, just give us a call and we’ll discuss it with you during the free consultation we offer to all of our clients who are suffering with vibration white finger.
Common Tools And Jobs That Can Lead To Vibration White Finger
Vibration white finger conditions are caused by any tool that causes vibration and that makes your hands tingle or numb when using for a sustained period. Lower vibration tools can still lead to VWF if used over a really long period which surprises some clients who think that the damage is caused by the bigger, heavier and faster pieces of industrial equipment.
The most common tools that lead to vibration white finger, according to the HSE are:
- Impact drills,
- Handheld saws,
- Scaling Hammers and
- Powered hammers for demolition and road breaking.
Similar tools may also lead to vibration white finger if they vibrate when used and you can feel the vibration through your hands and wrists when using them.
It is possible to suffer from vibration white finger in any industry but the common industries that have jobs at risk to vibration white finger are (according the Health & Safety Executive):
- Utilities (water, gas electric),
- Civil engineering and construction,
- Shipbuilders and repairers,
- Engineering and
- Parks and Gardens maintenance.
How To Make A Claim For White Finger Compensation
If you think that you’re suffering from vibration white finger symptoms and would like to start a personal injury claim then the first thing to do is pick up the phone and tell us what happened in your case, when the symptoms began and when you told your employer.
We’ll provide a free consultation where we’ll cover all of the facts of the case against your employer and work for you to gather all of the evidence needed to ensure that the claim is successful and ensures you get the vibration white finger compensation that you deserve.
When you call to discuss your vibration white finger claim, it’d be handy if you have as much information available as possible so that we can get as full a picture as possible and, if we have enough information, begin your compensation claim right away.
When you engage with Legal Helpline we’ll gather all of the evidence required from witnesses, medical professionals and yourself and we’ll handle the whole claim on your behalf. We’ll also keep you up to date throughout the vibration white finger claim, if we receive an offer of compensation then we’ll let you know the amount offered and our thoughts on if it’s fair or not.
What Can You Claim For If You Have VWF?
There are a number of things that you can claim for when asking for compensation for vibration white finger and we will go through each of these with you to ensure you’re receiving the right amount for your compensation claim. The types of things you can claim for are:
- The general damages element of the claim: This is a pre-defined amount that you’ll get for the type of injury you’ve had, and it covers the pain and suffering you’ve incurred because of your vibration white finger injury.
- Loss of earnings: If you had to take time off of work because of your vibration white finger condition then, if your employer only paid statutory sick pay, then you’ll be able to claim the lost earnings back. Similarly, if you have had to stop working or take a lower paid job because of the vibration white finger then you should be able to claim for future loss of earnings.
- Cost of care: If you have to be looked after or aided in anyway because you’re unable to do all of the tasks that you used to do before the vibration white finger then any costs associated with this care can be claimed back.
- Personal expenses: If you’ve had to pay for medical appointments, private medical care or prescriptions because of your vibration white finger then you can claim this back. Also if you’ve had to modify anything at home, which can be linked to the vibration white finger condition then we’ll claim that for you as well.
Vibration White Finger Compensation Calculator
When looking vibration white finger compensation amounts on the Internet you’ve probably seen the phrase ‘vibration white finger compensation calculator’ in search engines. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as that because, as with most personal injury claims, each case is usually very different. There are no two cases that are exactly the same and the level of injury will have affected individuals differently.
Therefore, we don’t offer a compensation calculator, but the handy table below shows the sorts of payment ranges offered for different injury types. Use it for guidance only, we’ll be able to discuss amounts of compensation we think you’re entitled to when we begin to understand your case in our free consultation.
|Injury type||Further notes or comments||Settlement|
|Finger Injuries - minor||Minor injuries such as nail being torn off or similar levels of injury.||Up to £4,160|
|Finger Injuries - serious||Such as long-term tendon damage, loss off mobility and stiffness.||£13,080 - £14,330|
|Loss of your Fingers||It's rare for fingers to be amputated for VHF injuries but this figure shows the amount you may be offered||£3,150 - £21,910|
|Thumb Injuries - minor||Minor injuries such as nail being torn off or similar levels of injury.||Up to £3,460|
|Thumb Injuries - moderate||This may include damage to the nerves or tendos which will heal fully.||£8,470 - £11,040|
|Thumb Injuries - serious||Serious injuries may never fully heal and there will be some loss of function in the thumb.||£11,040 - £14,690|
|Thumb Injuries - very serious||The thumb can be affected by vibration white finger injury and a total loss could be devastating hence the higher settlement figure||£17,190 - £30,700|
|Loss of your thumb||Complete loss of a (one) thumb.||£31,140 - £48,080|
|Pain & Suffering||Dependent on the amount of suffering involved||£1,000 - £200,000|
|Loss Of Future Earnings||This amount is variable base on what type of work you did before, whether you can continue in it following your vibration white finger injury and how long you'll be out of work||£10,000 - £400,000|
If you are unsure if your injuries fit in to the table above then don’t worry, it’s only for guideline purposes. The best advice is to speak to one of our specialists who can assess your case for vibration white finger in a free consultation. As we’ve dealt with many cases we’ll be able to give you a quick decision on whether your case is suitable and likely to receive compensation when using our no win no fee service.
No Win No Fee VWF Solicitors
Vibration white finger personal injury claims can be quite a complex case to raise properly and a specialist personal injury solicitor would always be recommended for such a case. If you’ve suffered from vibration white finger and are considering lodging a compensation claim then you may be worried about the costs a specialist solicitor may charge. That’s why we offer a no win, no fee service for cases of vibration of white finger that we take on for our clients. That means that we don’t charge anything up front, we don’t bill you by the hour for our work preparing your compensation claim and we don’t charge you anything if we’re not successful in gaining you compensation.
It used to be the case that if you used a no win no fee solicitor and won your case then the other party involved would pay for your solicitors fees but that’s not the case any more. If we do win on your behalf we have to charge you for our service but don’t worry, you will be informed of the amount from the outset (a percentage), which won’t change, so that there are no surprises at the end.
Why Claim With Legal Helpline
At Legal Helpline we’re aware that the prospect of making a claim for vibration white finger against an employer may worry some of our clients, especially if you’re still working for them. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and dedication to winning the amount of compensation you deserve for your injury while, at the same time, maintaining a good relationship with your employer’s representative.
We will always keep you up to date through out the process, which we will manage completely for you, and should you receive an offer, we’ll let you know straight away how much it is and whether we think it’s a good offer or whether we think your injuries deserve a higher amount.
Call Our Team Now For Free VWF Claims Advice
Now that you’ve read our guide on vibration white finger claims, hopefully you’re ready to make your own claim with us. If so our team are ready now and you can contact them by:
We’re happy to consider all cases of vibration white finger and will happily consider any case, big or small, so please get in touch so we can start your claim today on a no win, no fee basis. We can start straight away with a free consultation where will gather all of the information regarding your vibration white finger injury and decide on the best way to progress your claim for compensation.
Here are a few more articles that you may find useful if you want to know more before making you vibration white finger compensation claim.
HSE Pocket Card – A handy guide detailing how employees can protect themselves from vibration white finger.
Accident at work claims – Our own guide to personal injury accidents at work.
Raynaud’s Syndrome – An NHS article on Raynaud’s syndrome mentioned earlier in this article.