Asbestos-related Diseases – Claim Compensation for Exposure to Asbestos at Work
Asbestos-related diseases are still wreaking havoc on the UK workforce, despite the sharp decline in asbestos usage since the 80s/90s. There are currently 5000 deaths on average a year with clear links to asbestos exposure, in the form of Mesothelioma, lung cancer and other lung diseases such as asbestosis. It is by far one of the worst forms of ill-health developed in a work environment.
Because of the long latency in the development of all asbestos causing diseases, previous working conditions, like in manufacturing and construction, prior to the 1980s and especially after world war 2, are largely to blame for the number of workers exposed to asbestos suffering today.
After often a few decades of incubation, these diseases can quickly become fatal on the onset of symptoms – most of which aren’t particularly uncommon or misidentified as other illnesses. In cases were asbestos-related diseases aren’t malignant, like Asbestosis or pleural disease of the lungs, the illness can severely affect the ability for people to experience life fully, and often leads to issues or complications that later become fatal.
Can I claim on behalf of a loved one who died from workplace exposure to asbestos?
We’re acutely aware of the fact that victims of asbestos exposure don’t have a lot of time to bring a claim for compensation – or that it’s a priority with their time left – we have worked with families to seek justice and financial support for lost loved ones. Speak to our team on 08082391859 any time it suits you for an empathetic and friendly service.
What is asbestos and why is it so dangerous to workers?
Asbestos is an umbrella term for a range of six silicate minerals formed in nature that are made up of long and fine crystals fibres. Some of these being Amosite, Tremolite, Chrysotile and Crocidolite. These fibres can be straight or curvy and are structured with miniscule fibrils that can become airborne when handled or ruptured. All forms of asbestos-related illnesses are contracted from inhalation. The fibrils are what become trapped deep within (mostly) the lungs and in the case of asbestosis, cause inflammation as the immune system attempts to mount a defence against it, often over a period of many years.
Inhalation of fibres often develops into cancers such as Mesothelioma or diseases like asbestosis. The core types of illnesses asbestos exposure can cause are:
- Mesothelioma, which is typically found in the lungs, but also near the heart, stomach and reproductive organs.
- Lung cancer
- Diffuse Pleural thickening
- Larynx cancer
- Ovary cancer
- Pharynx cancer
- Stomach cancer
- Pleural Plaques
Asbestos has had a long history of usage, notably being mass-produced in the late 1800s. It is particularly good a resisting fire and electricity, which was quite important for the industrial surge during and after world war 2, especially in shipbuilding industries and construction.
Asbestos usage has been completely illegal since 1999. Most contact now comes in the form of exposure during removal, demolition or extension during building and construction with the banned substance. As such, employers are regulated to account for the substance and prepare workers with adequate protective gear and training against exposure.
Whilst the vast number of cases we deal with are from legacy employment, if your employer isn’t working to these regulations, they are breaking the law and putting you at significant risk. Speak to our team for advice on 08082391859.
What industries have workers that are most likely to develop an asbestos-related illness?
Typically, construction and manufacturing – when it comes to making asbestos products for building – are the most affecting industries for these industrial diseases. Given the little effort required to discharge fibrils from the substance, practically any contact with asbestos can release the hazard.
Are any other industries at risk of exposure?
Very, very few of all the industries operating in the UK handle Asbestos intentionally. However, some structures, typically older ones, can still house the dangerous substance and thus, puts more workers at risk of developing an asbestos-related disease. Generally asbestos is “safe” if the structure it resides in is secure, but with aging buildings – like those used for education or public administration bodies – any damage can cause asbestos fibres to go airbourne. We are seeing an increase in claims from people who have never made contact with asbestos developing diseases, and it can take decades to know for sure if they were exposed to it.
If this has happened to you, or someone you know, speak to our team of experts today for expert advice on making a claim for asbestos exposure – we’re available on 08082391859 24/7
What locations in the UK have relatively more employees suffering from asbestos exposure?
Quite a few areas in England, Scotland and Wales involved with shipbuilding have a statistically higher deaths than the UK as a whole. Where Asbestosis is concerned, these unitary areas have higher standardised mortality ratios:
- Barrow-in-Furness – to the north west
- Sunderland, North Tyneside and Hartlepool – in the north east
- Plymouth – to the south west.
- Newham and Barking & Dagenham – within greater London
- West Dunbartonshire and Inverclyde – in Scotland
These unitary areas have high standardised mortality ratios of Mesothelioma deaths:
- Barrow-in-Furness – to the north west
- West Dunbartonshire – in Scotland
- North and South Tyneside and Hartlepool – in the north east
- Portsmouth and Medway – in the south east of England.
- Plymouth – to the south west.
Although these aren’t an exhaustive list of areas with high asbestos-related illness, they do paint a sad landscape of the industrial make up of the UK and how its employees have suffered from unprotected exposure.
Regardless of where you are in the UK, if you have contracted a disease from working with asbestos, we can help you claim compensation – we’re on 08082391859 24/7.
What can be done to reduce or prevent work-related illness caused by asbestos?
Fortunately, with it being banned in the UK, exposure has dropped dramatically. But the extent of its usage means it is still quite present in a lot of buildings, especially industrial units, across the nation. Companies that encounter the substance are regulated to ensure workers have training and are protected against asbestos. Substantial and effective PPE, as well as regular asbestos training are an absolute must, especially as the effects of exposure are not evident for years.
Am I likely to have a case to claim compensation for my industrial disease?
It is very unlikely that exposure is deliberate and willing in our personal lives, meaning employers have put people at risk as part of their job role. We can’t unequivocally guarantee compensation for asbestos-related illnesses, but employer negligence is very consistent with these claims, and we have had may successful claims, even with companies that have gone under. To find out for sure, speak to our team on 08082391859 for a free claim assessment.
What advantages do I have if I claim work-related asbestos exposure compensation with Friends Legal?
- We have a team of technical qualifiers who can assess your claim for free. If they feel you have a case, we bring your claim to one of our panel solicitors – that way you don’t run up any legal fees by just asking questions.
- Our telephony team is open 24hrs a day, but you can leave them a message with our contact form, and they’ll get back to you within a few working days.
- Our panel of workplace illness solicitors can work on a no win, no fee* basis, meaning again, you’re not drumming up expensive legal fees by claiming for your ill health.
- Our team covers the whole of the UK, and you’ll be assigned to a panel solicitor depending on if you’re in England and Wales, or Scotland.
- We have a UK call centre, based in Manchester, and come from all walks of life.
- We have helped thousands of sick employees claim compensation.
- We fight for the maximum compensation for your occupational illness, because ultimately your job is to make the company successful and they should at least ensure your health and well-being in exchange.
- When we calculate your claim amount, we factor in loss of earnings, general expenses and any ongoing costs incurred by your condition, so that you get the highest level of compensation due to you.
- We’re friendly, empathetic and here to help you however we can.
Get in touch with our solicitors** today to find if and how much compensation you could claim.
If you’re suffering from an illness, such Mesothelioma or Asbestosis because of workplace exposure, and your employer is at fault, get in touch today. Call our helpline on 08082391859 to start your claim – we’re here to help.