Asbestos Justice pursued a successful mesothelioma claim for Mr C who was exposed to harmful amounts of asbestos when working for a company called Clark and Eaton as a glass decorator.
The company was originally called James Clark and Eaton, and it then became known as Clark and Eaton, before being sold to Solaglass in 1982, forming part of Saint-Gobain Plc.
We carried out insurance searches and were able to locate employer’s liability coverage for the business, opening the door to Mr C’s entitlement to mesothelioma compensation.
We obtained a detailed witness statement from Mr C in support of his mesothelioma claim which confirmed that he worked for the offending employer for 20 years from 1962 onwards.
He worked full-time for the company at 3 sites, including Kingsland Road, Shawditch, London; Great Suffolk Street, Blackfriars London and Southern Industrial Estate, Bracknell, Berkshire.
At each of the sites there was one large kiln in which the glass was fired. These kilns measured approximately 6 feet x 10 feet long x 5 feet high. They were situated in separate rooms due to the heat generated. These rooms were only small, measuring just a couple of feet wider than the kiln. There was no ventilation in the rooms and they were dusty.
The kilns had a counter-balanced flap door at one end. Mr C would lift the door and slide out a metal bed on which glass was fired. The bed the glass was placed on was filled with what our client thought was a silica product. It was about 4 inches deep and was white in colour and in powder form. Mr C had cause to fill the bed with the powder when it needed topping up. It was stored in sacks by the side of the kiln. He did not receive a mask of any kind for doing this job and when the powder was poured, it would rise up into the atmosphere.
Mr C also confirmed in his statement that the kiln was lined with firebricks. There was asbestos cladding around the door of the kiln. The kilns were repaired from time to time when the elements were replaced. He would be working when this was done, in close vicinity to the kiln rooms and therefore, if any asbestos dust was released will have inhaled it. The kiln rooms were never cleaned by the cleaner. When they became dusty, Mr C would brush them with a brush and pan and place the dust in an open bin.
From 1969 to 1982, Mr C worked at the Bracknell site. At this location, Mr C worked at his bench in the glass decorating department where there was a partition wall that separated his department from the main factory. This wall was approximately 150 feet long. The bottom half was made out of breeze blocks to about 10 feet high. The rest of this was made out of boards measuring 4 feet x 8 feet. Mr C believed this to have been asbestos because he knew a shop steward at the time had been told that it was asbestos by one of the team that was pulling the wall down. Mr C’s bench was only about 4 feet from the partition wall, and he worked very close to it from 1969 to the date it was pulled down in the 1970s.
At some time in the 1970s, a crew of builders came in to demolish the top section of the partition wall. Mr C and other workers continued to work as usual whilst the building work went on. The area was not sealed off from the workforce and this was relied upon as proof of negligence in support of his mesothelioma claim. Mr C recalled that there was extreme dust created by the demolishing of the partitions and the original partition was replaced with what looked like similar partitions. It was not replaced with a different type of finish or left open plan.
Whilst the demolition works were going on, Mr C was not given any warnings about any dangers they were in, nor was any protection provided in the form of masks.
Medical evidence showed that Mr C’s mesothelioma had been caused by the exposure to asbestos he experienced when working for his former employer.
As a result of the employer’s disregard for Mr C’s health and safety, we were able to secure a sizeable sum of mesothelioma compensation for Mr C to use during his lifetime in the amount of £450,000.
If you require assistance in pursuing a mesothelioma compensation claim or believe you or a family member have a valid claim for asbestos compensation, please contact us today on our freephone number 0800 038 6767. Alternatively, head over to the ‘Contact Us’ page, complete the form and we will be in touch.