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UK Must Follow EU’s Asbestos Standard, Expert Urges

Specialist Demands More Compliance


Specialists at Irwin Mitchell have welcomed the European Commission’s request for the UK to make legislatory changes that will ensure more workers are protected from the risks associated with deadly building material asbestos.

Authorities in the UK have been found to not comply with three obligations which make up part of the European Union’s directive on the protection provided to employees who are involved in activities which lead to low-intensity exposure to asbestos.

The three obligations are notifying asbestos works to the relevant national authority, completing an initial health assessment and repeating the process every three years until the risk of exposure ends and keeping a register of employees who have come into contact with the substance.

Irwin Mitchell regularly works on behalf of workers and their loved ones who have suffered exposure to asbestos due to the failure of their employers to adequately protect them from the risks.

Adrian Budgen, a specialist in asbestos-related disease claims at the firm, said immediate action is needed to address this issue.

He explained: “Asbestos is well-known to be the biggest occupational killer of all time, while we regularly see the terrible impact it has on so many people who have  contracted mesothelioma simply because of someone else’s negligence.

“This means that the very suggestion some workers who come into contact with the material may not be afforded the necessary and vital protection is a major concern which needs to be addressed.

“Changes in legislation would play a vital role in ensuring that firms are obliged to carry out full and proper checks if there is the slightest possibility that their employees could face exposure to the deadly fibres.

“Health and safety must be placed higher up the agenda if exposure to asbestos, and the terrible consequences that this holds, is to become a thing of the past. I hope that the government moves quickly to bring the UK in line with the EU standard.”

If you or a loved one has been affected by an asbestos related illness, our solicitors can help you to claim compensation. See our Asbestos Claims page for more information.