The wife of a former lagger from Liverpool, who died after developing a fatal disease as a result of working with asbestos, has secured compensation. 

Her husband was 68 when he died in 2015, having been diagnosed with mesothelioma just a year earlier. 

He worked for a number of manufacturers in the Merseyside area between 1965 and the mid-1980s. His job involved mixing asbestos with water to make lagging that would insulate pipework and boilers. The process would cause asbestos dust to circulate in the air around him and he would often inhale it, inadvertently. 

In many of his earlier roles he was not provided with breathing equipment and, even when such equipment started being introduced, he was not made aware of the dangers of asbestos. Wearing safety equipment was also not a rule enforced by his employers. 

He was originally diagnosed with pleural plaques in 2000, and a scan more than a decade later revealed a shadow on his lung. Further tests and x-rays confirmed that this was mesothelioma, an incurable and fatal, asbestos disease, which caused him severe breathlessness and weight loss.

"This is a tragic example of how an asbestos condition can lead to something more serious, decades after the initial exposure took place. Our client came to us aware of the dangers of asbestos but that doesn’t make the diagnosis any easier to accept."

Louise Larkin,
of Thompsons Solicitors

Following his diagnosis, he contacted Thompsons Solicitors who secured an interim settlement to cover the costs of his care and treatment. After he had died, Thompsons’ specialist asbestos disease solicitors supported his family in settling his compensation claim in full. 

His wife said: “It was excruciating to see my husband become so ill, but even worse was the fact that we couldn’t do anything about it. I’d begun to understand the dangers surrounding asbestos when he was diagnosed with pleural plaques years before, but we had hoped that nothing more serious would come of it. This was not the case. 

“To work at so many companies, yet not one warn him about asbestos, was shocking and made us wonder how many other families have been devastated by the disease. He even told me about his former colleagues, who he knew had died from asbestos disease in their 50s. It’s truly terrible. 

“I can only hope that something positive can come out of this and people understand that they aren’t alone if a loved one is diagnosed with an asbestos disease.” 

Louise Larkin, of Thompsons Solicitors, said: “This is a tragic example of how an asbestos condition can lead to something more serious, decades after the initial exposure took place. Our client came to us aware of the dangers of asbestos but that doesn’t make the diagnosis any easier to accept. 

“We are proud to support those who have developed avoidable illnesses as a result of their working conditions and will continue to hold the employers responsible to account.”