Widow Of Former Tata Steel Worker Wins Battle For Justice

Widow Of Former Tata Steel Worker Wins Battle For Justice

The widow of Mr T, a family man who died from mesothelioma at the young age of 59, has won her battle for justice against Tata Steel.

Mr T, from Birmingham, died in October 2012 after suffering from the asbestos-related disease mesothelioma for more than five years.

He was exposed to asbestos during his 13-year career at Tata Steel, where he began as a trainee fitter and subsequently worked as a qualified fitter and maintenance engineer, based at its factory premises in Coombs Wood, Halesowen.

In the course of his daily duties, Mr T would have to cut away sections of asbestos lagging up to two or three feet long. Cutting away the asbestos lagging using a Stanley knife or a blade, he used his hands to pull the lagging away from the pipe work. Some of the lagging was in such poor condition that it easily broke away from the pipes it was covering. He would unwittingly pick up asbestos debris that had fallen to the floor and dispose of it.

He was exposed to significant amounts of asbestos dust during these tasks. He was never warned of the dangers associated with asbestos and nor was he ever provided with respiratory protective equipment.

His widow said: “When my husband passed away in October 2012 he was 59 years old. We had been together for over 31 years. It would have been our 32nd anniversary on the day of his funeral. My husband never smoked. He was fit and healthy and took care of his physical health. To lose him in this cruel way is very painful.”

Satinder Bains, an industrial disease expert at law firm Irwin Mitchell’s Birmingham office, issued proceedings against Tata Steel at the High Court, following which Tata Steel was ordered to pay Mrs T a six figure sum in compensation.

Satinder said: “This is a desperately sad case. Mr T struggled for a number of years with his painful symptoms. This case yet again illustrates the wholesale lack of disregard for the safety of workers in the workplace.

“Sadly, many employers did not do enough to manage the risks of asbestos exposure despite knowing how dangerous it is. It is only right that those people affected by exposure to asbestos through no fault of their own are entitled to justice from their former employers.”

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