I have worked as a welder for some years, but recently I suffered damage to my retinas that my doctor says is because of my work. As I am no longer able to work as a result, am I able to claim injury compensation for welding burns?
You will be able to claim injury compensation for welding burns if it can be determined that your employer’s negligence led to your injury. Working as a welder is a highly dangerous profession, and it is imperative that the relevant health and safety precautions are taken. Should the relevant measures be neglected, serious injuries may occur. In your case, it is possible that you were not injured by the temperature of the torch but by its intense UV light. The brightness of this light could have burned into your retinas, potentially causing permanent damage.
This could have happened due to insufficient measures being taken by your employer in order to prevent such an accident occurring. All employers have a duty of care towards their employees in order to provide a safe environment in which to work. Should they fail in this duty of care they can be liable for any compensation claim which may be initiated. In this case it is likely that your retinas were damaged by poor quality equipment which did not protect your eyes from the intense light. If this is the case, your employer may be liable for your injury because of failure to ensure that the protective gear was of suitable quality. Your employer may also be held liable for your injury if you were not suited for the task at hand, but were instructed to carry it out regardless.
There is still the possibility that injury compensation for welding burns could be stalled if contributory negligence is an issue. This may be the situation if the appropriate safety gear was provided but you declined to use it or if you had been fully and properly trained in its usage, but you failed to apply this training. While contributory negligence will not disqualify a person from claiming compensation, it may result in a reduction in the compensation to which you may be entitled.
Determining who is liable for your claim to compensation can sometimes be difficult, and a claim may not always be easy to pursue. For this reason, you are advised to consult a personal injury solicitor at the earliest opportunity. A solicitor can advise on the strength of your claim, the amount of compensation to which you may be entitled and whether your claim is worth pursuing. For this reason, if you believe that you have a valid claim for injury compensation for welding burns to your retinas, you are advised to contact a personal injury solicitor without delay.