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Niamh Sherwood acted for Mr Jackson, aged 85, who was diagnosed with asbestos-related diffuse pleural thickening as a result of his exposure to asbestos at work.

Exposure

Mr Jackson was exposed by two employers; Steatite and Porcelain Products Limited (now known as Morgan Electro-ceramics Limited) and Worcester Royal Porcelain Company Limited (now known as Company Number 676219 Limited). Mr Jackson worked for both these companies as an instrument mechanic. His job involved maintaining and repairing electrical and mechanical instruments.

At Steatite and Porcelain, Mr Jackson worked in huge kilns. In the course of production the porcelain was placed on trugs running along rails which progressed through the kilns, from one end of the kiln to the other.  The front and back of each trug was coated with asbestos rope. Underneath each 120 foot kiln there was a tunnel approximately 5 feet 5 inches high. Dust from the asbestos rope on the front and back of the trugs was released as it degraded and/or trugs bumped into one another and the dust fell into the open top tunnels. The asbestos dust gathered onto the steel girders and the steel sleepers spanning the tunnel. Once disturbed it fell into the tunnel as the cable attached to the trugs was dragged along. Mr Jackson also worked in the boiler house, which was in the workshop. Here Mr Jackson was also exposed to and inhaled asbestos dust and fibres.

At Worcester Royal Porcelain, Mr Jackson was the only instrument technician employed. There were ten kilns in total. There was a 120 foot German-made kiln of a similar type used by Steatite and Porcelain. One of the kilns was a 50 foot German-made, gas-fired kiln which had a tunnel beneath it similar to the 120 foot kilns. Mr Jackson was exposed to asbestos in the same way as he was exposed when working for Steatite and Porcelain.

Compensation

Mr Jackson was never warned about the dangers of working with asbestos and was not provided with any masks or protective equipment. Mr Jackson fell ill and became breathless. He was referred for further investigations and was diagnosed with asbestos-related diffuse pleural thickening. Mr Jackson’s claim settled for £31,000 gross.