A man from Warwickshire who has been diagnosed with mesothelioma has secured compensation for the asbestos exposure that caused his illness.
Colin Morris had worked as an apprentice electrician in the early 1960s. His job involved working with electrical components alongside workers mixing asbestos lagging and applying it to pipes. This work often led to asbestos dust being disturbed.
Despite the dangers of asbestos being known at the time, Mr Morris was never warned about the risks nor provided with protective clothing. The area where he worked was poorly ventilated.
Mr Morris did not begin to experience symptoms until May 2016 – more than 50 years later – when he began to feel breathless. He was initially prescribed antibiotics but his health continued to deteriorate. A scan showed a build-up of fluid in one of his lungs and a biopsy confirmed he was suffering from mesothelioma. Having previously been in good health, he now struggles with day-to-day tasks.
Mesothelioma is a rare cancer which is almost always caused by exposure to asbestos. The disease usually develops many years after the exposure that caused it and is invariably fatal.
Mr Morris pursued a claim against his former employer and secured compensation of £260,000.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), asbestos causes around 5,000 deaths a year, about half of which are the result of mesothelioma. Information on asbestos health and safety can be found on the HSE website.