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Woman Seeks Information From Late Husband's Former Colleagues After Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Specialist Lawyers Investigate Asbestos Exposure Through Husband’s Overalls


Dave Grimshaw, Press Officer | 0114 274 4397

A Newcastle woman who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, a form of cancer caused by exposure to asbestos, is appealing for information from her late husband’s colleagues as she believes she came into contact with the substance while washing his work overalls.

Linda Coates, 64, was diagnosed with the terminal disease in February 2016 and she has instructed expert asbestos-related disease lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to investigate how she came into contact with the hazardous substance.

Linda was married to her husband David Coates, who died in 2002, for almost 30 years believes she inhaled asbestos dust and fibres from David’s work overalls.

David was employed as an electrical contractor and worked for a number of firms during his career, including Woolman Ltd, N G Bailey and Co Ltd and N E I Parsons Ltd.

During his career he worked on a number of large industrial sites across the country, including at Didcot Power Station in Oxfordshire.

Linda recalls that when David was working away from home he would bring his dirty overalls, which were covered in dust, home and Linda would wash them before he went back to the accommodation provided near the sites.

Now Linda, along with her legal team at Irwin Mitchell, is appealing to those who worked alongside her husband to come forward with information they may have on the presence of asbestos at the sites they worked at, the measures in place to protect them from asbestos or any warnings in place about taking work overalls home.

Roger Maddocks, a Partner in the asbestos-related disease team at Irwin Mitchell, who is representing Linda, said: 

Expert Opinion
“Mesothelioma is an extremely aggressive disease that causes a great deal of pain and suffering for victims. It can be caused by inhaling asbestos dust and in this case it appears Linda was exposed to the material as she handled and cleaned her husband’s overalls.

“Linda was just trying to care for her husband and family but has now been given the devastating diagnosis.

“We know from our experience that many employers knew about the risks of asbestos but sadly too many did not do enough to protect their workers from the substance or inform them of the dangers it posed to their health, and the health of their families who may be exposed through dust on their work clothing.

“Mesothelioma is a horrible disease and unfortunately there is no cure. It takes decades after exposure to the harmful dust and fibres before symptoms develop and sadly Linda’s husband has passed away and is unable to provide exact details of his employment and how he was exposed to asbestos.

“We are looking for people who worked with David Coates at various contractors or on a number of industrial sites across the UK, including the Didcot Power Station, as they may be able to help provide vital information so that we can move Linda’s case forward.”
Roger Maddocks, Partner

Linda said: “My mesothelioma diagnosis cam completely out of the blue for me and I was even more shocked when I found out it may have been caused by inhaling asbestos dust and fibres my husband brought home on his overalls.

“I remember how dusty and dirty the overalls used to be when he came home and I used to get annoyed when he sat on the sofa with the overalls on. I always used to wash his overalls when he was working, but I never knew the dust and fibres might have been asbestos.

“I’m very concerned about my future and I just want to appeal to people who worked with David to come forward and help me if they can.”

Anyone who can help provide information about working at Didcot Power Station in the 1980s, or about working conditions at Woolman Ltd, N G Bailey and Co Ltd and N E I Parsons Ltd should contact Amber Connolly at Irwin Mitchell on 0191 279 0111 or email amber.connolly@IrwinMitchell.com