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Irwin Mitchell's specialist workplace injury team has successfully claimed £220,000 for the family of a 74-year-old family man who sadly died from mesothelioma, a terminal form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos.
The man tragically died from mesothelioma on 9 February 2012. Before he passed away, he instructed Irwin Mitchell to investigate a claim against his former employers for negligence due his exposure to asbestos during the course of his employment.
The man had previously worked at the Courtaulds Little Heath Works between 1964 – 1997. During his long period of employment, he spent time working as a maintenance fitter and supervisor of the fitters. His work involved maintaining machinery and plant equipment much of which was covered in asbestos insulation that had become damaged and deteriorated over time.
Exposure To Asbestos
There was a vast network of pipes distributing steam around the factory and to the machinery and equipment, all of which were lagged with asbestos. Some of this lagging was in poor condition with debris that had broken off, causing asbestos dust to pollute the atmosphere of the factory. During his time working at the Courtaulds Little Heath Works, the man was exposed to asbestos regularly which he could not avoid inhaling.
The man was not provided with any health and safety training to minimise the dangers of asbestos during his employment and he was not provided with any warnings of the dangers of asbestos exposure.
Before he was diagnosed with mesothelioma, he was largely fit and healthy. He began experiencing symptoms of the illness in February 2011 and following a number of investigations including x-ray, CT scan and a biopsy he was informed that he was suffering from mesothelioma. This was naturally a devastating diagnosis for him and his family. He took the decision to have chemotherapy treatment but his condition deteriorated and he sadly passed away on 9 February 2012.
Irwin Mitchell were instructed by the man shortly after his diagnosis and the firm acted quickly in order to try to obtain compensation for him during his lifetime, but unfortunately this was not possible.
How We Helped
Hayley Hill, Associate and industrial disease specialist based at Irwin Mitchell's Birmingham office, acted for him and subsequently his wife and family. Hayley said: "This was a potentially difficult claim due to the nature of the exposure experienced during his employment.
"The extensive investigations we carried out resulted in sufficient evidence to secure agreement from his former employers that he had been negligently exposed to asbestos during his employment, without the need to commence Court proceedings.
"Although the compensation paid by his former employers will not bring back their loved one, we were extremely pleased to be able to successfully conclude the claim and to provide some security for his wife and family which had been his hope in commencing the claim."
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