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Written on 13th May 2021

Boyes Turner’s expert asbestos and mesothelioma claims solicitors recently settled a mesothelioma claim on behalf of Terence, following exposure to asbestos dust whilst working on the Nash Mills site for well-known paper manufacturers John Dickinson.

Exposure to Asbestos

Terence explained that he was employed as a Fire Safety Officer for John Dickinson between 1977 and 1984 at their Nash Mills site.  His job involved putting out fires and walking the floors to monitor work being undertaken which posed a fire or safety risk.

At the paper mills, steam pipes fed into the machinery as the paper making process involved a lot of water and steam and Terence described that these pipes were lagged with asbestos. 

As a part of his role as a Fire Safety Officer, Terence would attend jobs on the site such as repairs and welding to the steam pipes in case of a fire as it was a combustible atmosphere.  This would involve removal of the asbestos lagging from the pipes which would produce a significant amount of dust.

In addition, once a year the mill would be shut down for two weeks for significant maintenance.  Terence would work continuously during this period of time to monitor the fire risks.  Asbestos lagging would be removed and the steam pipes would then be repaired.  This work could not commence until Terence arrived as First Safety Officer.  The work undertaken involved asbestos dust and debris being released into the atmosphere which Terence described he would then inhale.

Terence was not provided with respiratory protection or warnings about the dangers of asbestos dust during the period of his employment.

Mesothelioma Claim

Terence instructed us following his diagnosis of mesothelioma in February 2019 following some worsening breathlessness.

In February 2019 Terence underwent VATS, pleurodesis and pleural biopsy which confirmed a diagnosis of epithelioid mesothelioma.  Unfortunately, he developed a post-operative acute kidney injury which was managed with fluid resuscitation. 

The prognosis for Terence’s condition is that he will continue to deteriorate with increasing breathlessness and pain and will require increasing levels of care and assistance as his condition progresses.  His life expectancy is reduced by 14 years due to his mesothelioma. 

When we were initially instructed we made an application for benefits on Terence’s behalf and he received a substantial lump sum payment from the government of £28,301.  In addition, he receives weekly Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit payments and Personal Independence Payments to assist him with the care that he requires. 

Terence did not undergo chemotherapy or radiotherapy or any further treatment following his diagnosis of mesothelioma.  However, he wished to consider the options which may be available to him in the future including private immunotherapy, or other private mesothelioma related treatment. 

In reaching settlement of Terence’s case, we negotiated that the settlement should include payment of future treatment, including all reasonable immunotherapy treatment not available on the NHS as advised by his treating oncologist.  The Settlement Order included all other reasonable future oncology treatment not available on the NHS, to keep the options open for Terence to pursue further alternative private treatment in the future.

Terence’s claim was settled for the net sum of around £146,000 and any future treatment will be paid by the Defendant on top of this settlement sum. 

We are pleased to have been able to assist Terence with his claim and secure compensation for his mesothelioma.  Terence tells us that he is pleased to be in a position whereby he can leave money to his children and grandchildren, which would not have been possible prior to the settlement of his claim, as Terence was not in active employment and was receiving state benefits at the time of his diagnosis.