Legal Expert Urges That Lessons Must Be Learned From Past
New mesothelioma figures published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) have highlighted the terrible impact that asbestos exposure has had on so many lives and efforts must continue to improve safety around the material, according to a specialist lawyer.
The latest HSE report revealed there were 2,523 deaths linked to mesothelioma – a cancer of the lining of the lungs - in 2017, with projections suggesting that this annual rate of fatalities is expected to continue across the remainder of the decade before numbers then start to decline.
Over 2,000 of the reported deaths were men, while there was also a slight increase in the number of deaths in women linked to the deadly illness. Looking at the issue of occupation, the HSE report also revealed that men who worked in the building industry are now among those most at risk of developing mesothelioma.
Irwin Mitchell’s specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers have vast experience in providing advice and support to those who have developed life-limiting conditions like mesothelioma, helping them to gain answers and justice regarding how their illnesses were caused.
Expert Opinion“This latest report from the HSE has highlighted how mesothelioma and the consequences of past asbestos exposure unfortunately continue to impact on a huge number of people every year.
The dangers of asbestos have been well-known for several decades but, as our specialist work has revealed, many employers in the past simply failed to take steps to ensure their employees were properly protected from it. Sadly, the human cost of that gross negligence has now become evident.
Furthermore, while asbestos exposure has most commonly been linked to industrial environments in the past, we are increasingly seeing cases where the contact with asbestos has taken place in public buildings like hospitals and schools. The hazardous material is still present to this day in the majority of these institutions.
These latest figures are undoubtedly an important reminder that lessons must continue to be learned from the past, and that asbestos exposure remains a clear and present danger. Safety must always be the priority when it comes to the management of asbestos going forwards, as this is the only way of helping to prevent future deaths from related diseases.
The consequences of previous failures simply cannot be made again.”
Adrian Budgen - Partner