Cute Injury are on hand to provide you with immediate and effective legal assistance if you, or someone you know, has suffered an illness as a direct result of exposure to Asbestos in the past. Asbestos-related diseases such as Mesothelioma, Asbestosis and Pleural Thickening can take years and even decades to become apparent following asbestos exposure. If you or a family member has contracted an Asbestos-related disease then get in touch with us now for a free consultation.
"Thanks to Cute Injury I was able to claim compensation after suffering from mesothelioma caused by working as a builder."We were not provided with the correct protection at work, and Cute Injury were able to help me make a claim after I contracted mesothelioma."
If you feel that your employer at the time you were exposed to Asbestos failed to take reasonable steps to protect you - despite the fact that they should have been expected to foresee the damage that this could do, and that this failure resulted in being exposed to asbestos - then you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation. Get in touch with Cute Injury now to learn more about how we can help.
Did you know that there are around 4,000 Asbestos-related deaths in the UK every year and that deaths are expected to peak in the year 2015? In the EU as a whole, there are 250,000 asbestos-related deaths each year. We've put together this useful infographic to help you better understand the scale of asbestos exposure over the past few decades as well as learn more about the different types of asbestos and the effects it can have on the lungs - causing illnesses like mesothelioma and asbestosis.
The latest guidelines for the control of Asbestos was released on 6 April 2012, which has replaced all previous asbestos regulations. The Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012 was created as a result of the European Commission’s belief that the UK had not sufficiently fulfilled the EU Directive on Exposure to Asbestos (2009). Most aspects of the regulations have not changed. Things that have changed are mainly relating to certain types of non-licensed work with asbestos which include the need for keeping accurate records of the work carried out and medical surveillance.
Read more about Asbestos at work regulations here.
Were you aware that Asbestos is as deadly as fire?
Today this hazardous material can be found in hospitals, factories, offices and even schools. Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that does not burn and was previously used in many types of construction materials, such as fireproofing in textured plaster, pipe lagging, garage roof tiles and ceiling cavity.
However, it was discovered that Asbestos is every bit as deadly as fire once the fibres become disturbed. In 2011 the Health & Safety Executive claimed that exposure to asbestos resulted in over 4,500 deaths and on average it kills 5,000 people each year.
If Asbestos fibres are disturbed and breathed in the dust can scar the lungs.
This scarring is called Asbestosis and the symptoms of this disease include coughing and shortness of breath. The NHS has warned sufferers are at greater risk from other awful diseases, too, including:
Throughout 2011, 2,291 people died from Mesothelioma, whilst a further 491 people died due to Asbestosis itself.
The government body further estimates that 2000 people have died as a result of asbestos-related lung cancer.
The reason for the estimation in deaths is due to the fact that symptoms of an asbestos-related disease do not tend to show until 15-30 years after exposure to the fibre. If you are worried that you have been exposed in the past to asbestos the NHS recommends that you are mindful of any health changes and to visit your GP.
In 2012 the Control of Asbestos Regulations was updated because the EU decided that not enough was being done in the UK. However, the final kind of material, Chrysotile, or more widely known as White Asbestos, was banned in 1999. Blue (Crocidolite) and Brown (Amosite) Asbestos are also too common in our buildings, and these are the most deadly types. Both these forms of Asbestos were banned in 1985, and voluntary industrial bans were already being observed by many prior to that date. No Crocidolite was imported into the UK following 1970. That still leaves a vast amount of the material in UK premises, and Mesothelioma UK identifies some of the most at-risk trades as:
The Control of Asbestos Regulations states that those responsible for the maintenance of buildings works are under a 'duty to manage' any asbestos in them.
Here is a brief overview of the different types of Asbestos which have blighted the health of a generation.
Chrysotile, commonly known as White Asbestos, was the most commonly used type of Asbestos and the one you will be most likely to find lurking when renovating old properties. Read more about Chrysotile here.
One of the Asbestos types mainly found in Australia, South Africa and Bolivia, the fibres of Crocidolite have a bluish hue when viewed under a microscope; this is better known as Blue Asbestos. Read more about Crocidolite here.
Amosite, or Brown Asbestos, originated in Africa and was widely used in the pipe insulation and the construction of cement sheets. Read more about Amosite here.
Asbestosis is a chronic lung disease that is caused by the lung tissue being scarred by exposure to Asbestos. Read more about Asbestosis here.
Mesothelioma is a form of cancer that usually starts in the lungs but can also start in the abdomen. It is most commonly associated with exposure to Asbestos as most people who suffer from the disease will have been exposed to the substance at some time in their life. Read more about Mesothelioma here.
The “pleura” is the fine membrane which lines the lungs. Pleural Plaque is the term for small areas of scar tissue which form on the pleura (often after exposure to asbestos) which aren’t usually serious, but which can act as a precursor to Pleural Thickening. Damage to the pleura can cause scar tissue to form which can harden and reduce the space between the lung and the pleura – this is called pleural thickening.
This results in breathing difficulties and chest pain and is a common symptom of asbestos exposure.
Symptoms of pleural thickening include:
If you believe you may have been exposed to Asbestos at work and you are experiencing health problems such as Pleural Thickening, you may be entitled to make a claim. You should speak to a solicitor as soon as possible as there are strict time limits imposed on submitting your claim. If it can be proven that you were exposed to asbestos due to the negligence of your employer, then you have a good case for making a claim.
Further Reading on Asbestos:
What is Mesothelioma?
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