Appeal For Information On County Durham Kitchen Manufacturers Moores International And Magnet Kitchens
The family of a grandfather-of-seven are appealing for help to establish whether working at two County Durham kitchen manufacturers caused his asbestos cancer.
Jim Antoncich, 75, developed symptoms chest pains and breathlessness. Following test he was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a cancer of the lining of the lung often linked to asbestos exposure, in June last year. He died earlier this month.
Asbestos-related disease lawyers investigate
Following his diagnosis Jim, of Newton Aycliffe, instructed specialist asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate whether he was exposed to the hazardous material during his career as a quality controller.
The father-of-four's family are now taking on his quest for answers in his memory. They and their legal team are appealing for information as to the conditions Jim faced during his career.
Appeal for information on kitchen manufacturers
They are particularly keen to hear from anyone who worked with Jim during his time at Moores International in Newton Aycliffe between 1981 and 1990, or at Magnet Kitchens in Darlington from 1991 to 2012.
Expert Opinion“Jim’s case is unfortunately similar to many we’re contacted about and involves an individual who has developed an asbestos-related disease many years after exposure is thought to have taken place.
“Jim was understandably devastated by his diagnosis and what the future would hold for him and his family.
“Mesothelioma is a terrible disease and sadly is incurable. While nothing can make up for what happened to Jim we’re determined to help his family get the answers they deserve regarding his exposure.
“We would be grateful if anyone with information on these companies could come forward. Any information could make all the difference to Jim's family.” Helen Jones - Associate Solicitor
Mesothelioma: Jim Antoncich's story
The former Moores International made kitchen units and was based on the Newton Aycliffe Industrial Estate. Jim, who was born in Malta and moved to the UK in 1967, started as a machine operator at the firm before becoming a quality controller.
Before his death he said: “My first job related to loading and unloading the guillotine and dust was all over the place. I got a promotion and then went on to do quality checks on the chipboard that was used. I don’t remember any maintenance work, but I do recall that there may have been asbestos in one section. It had been found in the loading area and it was stripped out by specialist contractors.”
In 1991, Jim moved to Magnet in Darlington. He was initially employed in quality control, but also carried out inwards goods inspections and worked on the shop floor. He retired in 2012 to care for his wife, Beryl, who was seriously ill. She died aged 62 in 2013.
When alive Jim added: “Some of the work could be dusty and I remember contractors being brought in to remove some of the roof around 2010. The project was done while we worked below and I remember we were showered with dust. Plastic sheeting had been installed but it did not work and many people were not happy about it.
“Getting my mesothelioma diagnosis was a major shock. I previously tried to remain as active as possible but now I’m often tired and short of breath.
“I know nothing can turn back the clock and change what’s happened. However, finding out that my cancer is down to asbestos exposure has left me desperately wanting answers as to where I could have come into contact with it.
“It would be amazing if people could come forward and provide some further information, as that could make a big difference to my search for answers.”
How you can help Jim's family
Anyone with information is asked to contact Helen Jones at Irwin Mitchell on 0191 2790 043 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Find out more about our expertise un supporting people and families affected by mesothelioma at our dedicated asbestos-related disease section. Alternatively to speak to an expert contact us or call 0370 1500 100.