Eight years of hammering out and spot welding insulation blankets for aeroplane jet engines, without ear protection, has left sheet metal worker, Mr S, 40, needing hearing aids.

Mr S, who has worked for the engineering company in Cleveland since 1998, was paid over £33,000 compensation by his employer because the excessive noise he was subjected to at work permanently damaged his hearing. The firm failed to issue him with ear protection or take other safety measures to reduce his exposure to the noise.

Compensation paid for hearing aids

Mr S said, ‘Without hearing aids, I have to lip read which is really difficult. I give wrong answers because I mishear people and my colleagues make a joke of me which can be embarrassing. I have ringing in my ears all the time which is very frustrating when I am trying to get to sleep but cannot. It is very annoying.’

Mr S was prescribed NHS hearing aids which were so bulky he felt people were staring at him when he went out, even to the corner shop. Now, because of the compensation award, he is able to afford much smaller hearing aids.

Diane Davison from Thompsons Solicitors said, ‘We had a three-year long legal battle before the engineering company agreed to pay out significant compensation to Mr S. There are well-established laws to prevent this kind of injury occurring. I am very pleased that he can now buy digital discreet hearing aids which will add quality to his life.’