Heat stress can occur if your body is not able to regulate its temperature. This can make working in hot conditions dangerous and lead to serious health problems and even fatalities. Your employer has a duty of care to try and keep you safe at work. That means you could be compensated if you’ve suffered because of heat stress due to your employer’s negligence. Our guide on heat stress compensation claims will show you when a claim might be possible and the process of making a claim.
If you would like us to assess your claim for you, please call for a free consultation. A specially trained advisor will look at what happened and how you were affected. They could refer you to one of our personal injury solicitors who’ll work on a No Win No Fee basis if your claim is viable. As a result, you will only have to pay legal fees if your claim is successful.
You can call us on 0800 6524 881 if you’d like to speak to us right away. Alternatively, you can carry on reading to learn more about heat stress at work claims.
Table of contents
- What Is Heat Stress?
- Am I Eligible To Make A Heat Stress Compensation Claim?
- How Can Employers Reduce The Risk Of Heat Stress At Work?
- Evidence To Support A Heat Stress Compensation Claim
- How Much Compensation For Heat Stress At Work?
- Time Limits For Claiming Heat Stress Compensation
- Starting The Heat Stress Compensation Claims Process
Heat stress is where the body’s normal methods of controlling its internal temperature begin to fail. This can be caused by factors including air temperature, humidity, heavy clothing and work rate.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), the main symptoms of heat stress at work include:
- Muscle cramps.
- Heat rash.
- Concentration problems.
- Severe thirst.
- Dehydration caused by excessive sweating.
- Increased heart rate.
- Heat exhaustion (dizziness, fatigue, nausea and headaches).
- Heat stroke (convulsions, loss of consciousness).
Heat stroke is the most dangerous of the symptoms listed. It can lead to a coma and, in more serious cases, death if not detected soon enough.
Employees working in laundries, power plants, boiler rooms, bakeries, kitchens, foundries, compressed-air tunnels, brick firing, ceramics plants and glass or rubber manufacturing are particularly at risk of heat stress.
Our personal injury solicitors will offer to help you claim compensation for heat stress if they believe you have a reasonable chance of being compensated. To try and verify this, they’ll check whether:
- Your employer breached their duty of care towards your personal safety (negligence); and
- That negligence led to unsafe working conditions; and
- As a result, you were made ill because of heat stress.
If you call for a free consultation, we’ll review what happened and let you know if one of our solicitors can help. You can improve the chances of being compensated by providing evidence to support your case. We’ll explain more about this later in this guide.
In accordance with the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and other work-related legislation, your employer has a legal duty to try and keep you as safe as possible. Where you work in a hot environment, they should do all they can to try and prevent the risk of heat stress. That could include:
- Conducting regular risk assessments.
- Regulating how long staff are working in hot conditions.
- Ensuring there is cool water available for staff to reduce the risk of dehydration.
- Provide regular safety training for staff.
- Consider providing mechanical tools to reduce employee work rate.
- Provide specialist Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as breathable clothing or clothing with built-in cooling systems.
- Installing air conditioning and fans.
- Using physical barriers to reduce exposure to radiant heat from machinery.
If your employer has failed to meet their duty of care because they did not take steps to try and protect you, it might be possible for you to make a heat stress compensation claim. Please feel free to call us and explain how you’ve suffered and we’ll review your options for free.
Your employer’s insurance company is likely to reject your heat stress injury claim when it is received even if your employer has apologised for what happened. They will usually only pay compensation if the case against them is strong enough.
Therefore, you will need evidence to prove what happened, why your employer was to blame and how the symptoms of heat stress have affected you. The types of evidence that can help to do this include:
- Medical evidence. First and foremost, your solicitor will obtain copies of your medical records. They should help to confirm your diagnosis and demonstrate the treatment you underwent.
- Witness statements. Your colleagues may be asked for a statement to help confirm your working conditions on the day you were made ill.
- Correspondence. You could supply any emails or text messages you sent to your employer if you raised concerns about your well-being.
- CCTV footage. If your workplace has a security system, you could ask for a copy of any footage showing the moments leading up to when you became ill. As data is often wiped after 28 days, you should request this quickly.
- Accident reports. Employers are required to keep records of accidents and injuries in the workplace. Your copy of the report could be obtained to confirm where and when the incident occurred.
In addition to the above, you may wish to submit wage slips, bank statements or other financial records to help you claim back any costs linked to your heat stress illness.
To give you an early indication of potential compensation levels for heat stress injuries, we’ve included the following compensation calculator:
The amounts listed cover the suffering caused by your injuries. To calculate how much compensation for heat stress you might receive, your solicitor will usually need to refer to an independent medical report. This is a requirement for many personal injury claims so your solicitor will arrange this for you locally where possible.
In addition to compensation for any physical and psychological injuries, you could also receive damages for:
- Loss of earnings.
- Rehabilitation and medical expenses.
- Any loss of enjoyment of your normal activities linked to your heat stress illness.
- Care costs.
- Travel expenses.
- Future loss of earnings for more serious and long-term injuries.
As part of the heat stress compensation claims process, your solicitor will review how you’ve suffered physically, psychologically and financially as a result. Then they’ll use that information to try and ensure you are fairly compensated.
If you’ve lost a loved one because of heat stress at work, we could help you to claim too. We know that your loss can never be compensated but we’re here to help if you do want to claim.
As well as seeking justice for your loved one, we could help you to secure compensation if you were financially dependent on their income, pension or other benefits. Similarly, if you’ve incurred expenses such as funeral costs, these could be claimed back too.
There’s no obligation to claim if you do call so please reach out to us if you have any questions about your options.
Usually, personal injury claims have a 3-year time limit that begins on the date of an accident. Because heat stress can overwhelm you and cause confusion, the time limit for heat stress compensation claims will generally begin from the date you realised what had happened.
To help make it easier for evidence and medical files to be collected, we’d suggest beginning the claims process as soon as you can. An early start could also mean you’ll be paid interim payments to help if you’re struggling financially because of your injuries. For example, if your employer has accepted liability for what happened, you could receive interim payments to cover your loss of earnings before the claim is settled.
Heat stress claims can be settled relatively quickly if you’ve recovered fully. In cases where liability has been agreed upon, you could receive compensation in around 6 months or so. If more discussion is needed or if your prognosis is not yet understood, claims can take longer.
Our team is ready to assist you if you’d like to discuss claiming compensation for heat stress. If you call 0800 6524 881 today, your claim will be reviewed and you’ll be offered no-obligation advice about how to proceed.
We could connect you with a personal injury solicitor on our team if your claim is viable. If they offer to represent you, they will provide a No Win No Fee service. That means you won’t pay their legal fees unless you receive compensation for your suffering.
Please feel free to call or connect to our live chat service if you’ve any more questions about making a heat stress compensation claim.