Industrial Disease Verdict At Inquest Into Shipwright’s Death

Case Highlights 'Devastating' Consequences Of Asbestos Exposure


An inquest into the death of a shipwright who worked with the Royal Navy has ruled he died of industrial disease after exposure to asbestos.

Keith Hoskins, of Gloucestershire, worked at a Royal Naval Dockyard early in his life and over a period of 13 years carried out a range of tasks on ships which contained asbestos for both heat and fire insulation.

According to reports from The Herald, the 82-year-old died of the asbestos-related cancer mesothelioma after his health deteriorated with problems related to shortness of breath.

Irwin Mitchell represents a number of clients and the loved ones of victims who have contracted mesothelioma and other diseases following exposure to asbestos, including Royal Navy servicemen who come into contact with the material while working on board ships.

Helen Grady, an asbestos claims specialist at Irwin Mitchell’s Bristol office, said: “It is disappointing that cases like that of Keith Hoskins and our own clients who have served in the armed forces are increasingly common.

“We regularly see the devastating consequences that asbestos exposure can have on both sufferers and their loved ones.

“Sadly, those who are suffering as a result of exposure while in active service but left before 1987 are not able to pursue a civil claim to alleviate the financial hardship that is often endured once the terrible symptoms take hold. 

“This hardship is immediate for those who are still working and have to give up very soon either before or just after diagnosis, while those in retirement often have to accept the knowledge that their spouse will have to deal with enormous emotional and financial strain. 

“However, when civil claims are not possible, mainly for those who have served in the Royal Navy and are restricted by Crown Immunity, I have helped with US Trust Fund Claims and also claims through the Veterans Agency.  I have also been able to provide practical advice and general help and support for these who have been unfortunate enough to contract such a cruel disease.  

“It is vital that all employers sit up and take notice of the dangers of asbestos and learn lessons from terrible cases like these.”