Asbestos disease experts at Irwin Mitchell recently secured compensation of over £40,000 for one of our clients, 73-year-old Mr B, who had been exposed to asbestos over a period of two decades with various employers.
Exposure To Asbestos
Mr B was exposed to asbestos whilst working as a pipefitter for three firms at oil refineries in the Pembrokeshire area. He worked for both Press Construction Limited and Jenkins & Davies Limited at Texaco Oil Refinery and with Capper Pipe Services Co (Western) Limited at their Esso Refinery in Milford Haven.
During the course of his employment with these companies, he came into contact with asbestos. His work involved the repair and replacement of pipework, and in order to access these pipes, he was required on numerous occasions to first of all remove old lagging that covered them. Much of the old lagging was made of asbestos and Mr B was exposed to this as he stripped lagging from pipes when making repairs.
Despite the risks to his health, Mr B was never made aware of the dangers by his employer, or given a protective mask to wear.
Diagnosis Of Mesothelioma
At the time Mr B was diagnosed with asbestos related diffuse pleural thickening, he had been enjoying his retirement, having worked hard his entire life. Mr B splits his time between Pembrokeshire during the summer months and Portugal where he stays during the wintertime.
Battle For Justice And Final Settlement
Irwin Mitchell started court proceedings against Mr B’s past employer at the Birmingham County Court and were due to be in trial at the beginning of March. We successfully negotiated a settlement in excess of £40,000 before trial.
Kim Barrett, a solicitor in our Birmingham asbestos-related diseases team, commented: “This particular case highlights the widespread use of asbestos containing materials throughout heavy industry and the disregard of many employers for the welfare of their workers such as Mr B who, as a pipefitter, spent many hours working on pipework that had previously been lagged with asbestos lagging.
"No amount of money will ever compensate for being diagnosed with a condition like pleural thickening which can severely restrict breathing and impact on the lifestyle of the sufferer and his ability to carry out day to day activities.
"However, bringing a claim against your past employer(s) like Mr B did, holds the employer to account and the compensation awarded can be of real practical assistance with expenses that arise directly as a result of the asbestos-related condition."
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