Asbestos and Industrial Diseases

Asbestos and Industrial Diseases

No one should get ill from just going about their day-to-day work. But sadly due to poor working practices and the negligence of employers many people end up developing serious work-related illnesses often years later that can have a huge debilitating effect on their lives.

Industrial conditions such as high levels of noise, over-use of tools or exposure to asbestos can lead to serious diseases and conditions in the long term for workers. This can mean pain and suffering, and interference with the enjoyment of daily life, as well as financial pressures due to possible loss of earnings for time off work.  

If you have been exposed to harmful noise or substances at work and are suffering from a work-related condition then you may have a personal injury claim.

Asbestos-related diseases

Asbestos is a dangerous substance that once inhaled can lead to a range of serious illnesses. These medical conditions may not develop until many years after the exposure to asbestos, which was often due to unsafe working practices.

Risks of asbestos inhalation

Up until the 1970s asbestos use was widespread particularly in construction and heavy industry and many workers were exposed to asbestos dust or fibres.  While the dangers of asbestos were increasingly known, many employers did not take proper measures to protect their workers and their families, as well as people living nearby, from the risks of asbestos inhalation.

The effects of inhaling asbestos can take many years to show and the illnesses often arise decades after being exposed. These can be serious conditions such as asbestosis, asbestos-related cancer, mesothelioma, or pleural plaques. This can be life-changing for individuals and their families and can result in major financial strain, especially if it means loss of earnings or treatment costs. We understand the pressures this can put on families at such a distressing time and the justifiable anger many feel at being let down by their employers.

Even if you did not work directly with asbestos, you may still have a claim if you developed your asbestos-related disease because of exposure to asbestos that you should have been protected from. For example if a family member was exposed to asbestos at work they may unwittingly have brought back fibres on their work clothes or you may have lived nearby a workplace where asbestos was used.

Claim timescales

You have three years from when you are diagnosed in which to make a claim. So if you or a family member has been diagnosed with asbestosis, asbestos-related cancer, mesothelioma, or pleural plaques, call our team of specialist industrial disease lawyers to discuss your claim as soon as possible. We have the knowledge and expertise to win you the compensation you deserve.

Who to claim against

Because asbestos-related diseases can take so long to develop, a key issue in asbestos claims is in establishing the particular source of your asbestos exposure and your employer’s negligence at that time. Even if your employer has since gone out of business, you may still be able to claim against the insurance company that was acting for them when you were exposed to asbestos.

Occupational disease

Our industrial disease solicitors have expertise in a wide range of claims arising from exposure to:

Vibration

Hand-arm vibration syndrome can occur if you have regularly used vibrating tools at work.  The effects can range from minor to permanent loss of hand function. If you are suffering from numbness or coldness, pins and needles, tingling and whiteness of the fingers you may have hand-arm vibration syndrome, often called vibration white finger, and you may be entitled to compensation.

Noise

Harmful levels of noise at work can cause permanent damage to your hearing. Your workplace may be noisy due to machinery or due to the noise of using tools for certain types of work. Employers must protect your hearing from excessive noise. If they do not and your hearing is damaged then they may have to pay out on a personal injury claim.

If you have worked in a noisy environment and suffered deterioration in your hearing and/or tinnitus (a constant ringing or buzzing in the ears) then speak to our solicitors to find out more about claiming for noise-induced hearing loss.

Chemical or harmful substances

You may be one of many workers who are required to use harmful substances on a day-to-day basis. Unprotected exposure to chemicals at work can result in a variety of conditions, from a simple skin or eye irritation to more serious illnesses such as occupational asthma, which may leave you permanently unfit for work.

If your employers have not considered the risks of using chemicals at work and provided you with the proper protection and you have developed such conditions then our personal injury lawyers can advise you on claiming compensation for your injury and loss.

How can Thorntons help?

At Thorntons, our expert no win, no fee solicitors can assist you with your claim for industrial disease.

We have a team of industrial disease lawyers who specialise in pursuing industrial claims for work-related illness.  They have a track record of success in claims for vibration white finger and hearing loss claims and also deal with the range of claims arising from asbestos exposure.

If you think you or one of your family members may be suffering from an work related disease then speak to one of our Personal Injury Solicitors to find out whether we can pursue your claim.

You can start your industrial disease claim today by calling us free on 0800 731 8434 or complete our enquiry form. We will talk through your situation, answer any questions you may have and advise you if you can make a personal injury compensation claim. Our discussion will be confidential and you are under no obligation to make a claim. You can also take a look at our Claims Calculator to find out how much compensation you may be entitled to.

Useful Information

Some of our other clients found the following information helped them understand the claims process better.

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