Retired Electrician Launches Appeal To Ex-Colleagues After Asbestos-Related Cancer Diagnosis

Industrial Illness Specialists At Law Firm Irwin Mitchell Working With Family in Battle for Justice


A retired electrician who has recently been diagnosed with an asbestos-related cancer is appealing for his former work colleagues to help lawyers investigate how he was exposed to the deadly dust.

John Teasdale, 66, from Sunderland, Tyne and Wear, was diagnosed with mesothelioma on 19 September 2013 after suffering from pain in his back and breathlessness for a few months. Doctors told John that the cancer was most likely caused by exposure to asbestos during his career as an electrician.

He has now instructed asbestos-related disease experts at law firm Irwin Mitchell to investigate where and when he was exposed to the deadly dust so that he can obtain justice for himself and his family.

John began his career as an apprentice electrician at G.V. Cummings Ltd in 1962 until 1970; he carried out small scale electrical contracting work at boiler houses in pubs and clubs across Sunderland.

He later joined firm Sunderland Forge as an electrician where he worked on larger scale projects such as shipyards, hospitals and schools between 1970 and 1972 and also later in 1974 to 1979 in and around Newcastle, Darlington and Sunderland. He also worked for Campbell & Isherwood as an electrician between 1972 and 1974 mainly focusing on shipyard repairs and installations.

Expert Opinion
While the dangers of asbestos have been well known for decades, many companies and employers failed to take the necessary action to protect both their workers and the local community from the material.

“John worked as an electrician for many years and it is known that during the 1970s many workers in the ‘trades’ worked closely together so it is likely he was exposed to asbestos while plumbers lagged pipes close by.

“Unfortunately many employers failed to give their workers the necessary protective clothing such as face masks to stop them breathing in the dangerous dust. We are seeking John’s former colleagues to help us piece together his exposure to asbestos, and to help provide information on his working conditions.”
Roger Maddocks, Partner

John, a father-of-two, said: “I spent a lot of my professional career putting cabling in service ducts and ceiling spaces where the pipework or boilers were lagged with asbestos which I had no choice but to breathe in on a daily basis as I had no protective clothing.

“It was a big shock to me when I was diagnosed with mesothelioma and it has left myself and my family devastated as to what the future holds for me. I hope that this appeal encourages some of my old work mates to come forward and help Irwin Mitchell with their investigation.

“As a tradesman, I was never warned about asbestos and the potential health risk it causes, so it never crossed my mind that it would be a problem all these years later. I was looking forward to a long and happy retirement after working hard all of my life.”

Anyone with information about the companies mentioned above should contact Roger Maddocks on 0191 279 0091 or email