Asbestos Risks Not A Thing Of The Past Warns Top Lawyer

Expert Concerned After Reports Of ‘Very High’ Levels Of Asbestos In Former Bradford Cinema


A leading Yorkshire asbestos lawyer has warned of the dangers of complacency in relation to the risks of exposure to the deadly dust.

Ian Bailey, a partner at law firm Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office, issued the warning following reports in the Bradford Telegraph & Argus that it had been revealed that a number of Bradford councillors have been told that they may have been exposed to potentially-deadly asbestos during a visit to the former Odeon cinema in the city.

According to the newspaper, warning letters have been sent to councillors who visited the building before the controversial decision was made to demolish the old cinema.

A spokesman said “very high” levels of asbestos were discovered in the building.

The councillors visited the old cinema and were given protective suits when they entered the building with Council officers. Despite the very high levels of asbestos in the building, Councillor David Robinson said he was satisfied that any contamination would have been “minimal”.

“I think this episode shows the level of complacency which is creeping in about the dangers of asbestos”, said Bailey. “The dangers of asbestos exposure, even at low levels, has been known about for more than 40 years and it has also long been known that exposure to even small amounts can cause the deadly disease mesothelioma.

“I have spent all of my legal career acting for asbestos victims and their families and have seen the anguish and upset they have endured as a result of that exposure. It is therefore very disappointing that views are expressed which suggest that asbestos exposure, even at minimal levels, might not be harmful. We need to ensure that the mistakes of the past are not repeated and that safety around asbestos is paramount,” added Bailey.