Posted by Helen Childs, Partner
Claim for ICI worker for fatal Mesothelioma initially diagnosed as asbestosis settles for £80K
Ronald J worked at ICI Billingham from 1954 until his retirement in the 1980’s. He started work as a general pump maintenance worker, latterly becoming a plant hire supervisor. His work regularly brought him into contact with airborne asbestos dust, and entailed checking pump housing oil and water pump levels and general duties such as cleaning work areas, particularly after maintenance and repair work was carried out.
He also worked during factory shutdowns replacing pipes. He worked on cranes and other mobile plant throughout the ICI sites removing plant and pipe-works from numerous different workplaces, particularly before and after shutdown maintenance and repairs. He worked in the cracker plants, ammonia plants, acid tank and plants, nylon plants and the generator plant, as well as other locations within ICI Billingham. During shutdown much work was being carried on throughout the plant, with pipefitters and laggers renewing and replacing equipment. When he was plant hire supervisor, he hired out all types of heavy-duty tools and vehicles, pumps, portakabins etc. He carried out on-site inspections of all the hire and ICI equipment.
He developed breathlessness and became increasingly frail and died in June of 2013. There was an inquest into his death, and a post mortem was carried out. The pathologist confirmed the cause of death was asbestosis, and the coroner recorded a verdict of industrial disease.
Ronald lived alone, but before his final illness was very fit and well, and entirely independent. As his illness progressed he needed care and assistance from his relatives. He underwent investigations into the cause of his illness at hospital, but was too unwell for a biopsy.
Ronalds family instructed Royds Withy King to investigate a claim after the inquest, and we immediately obtained his medical history and instructed the pathologist/coroner to retain Ronald’s lung tissue samples.
Our medical expert considered the radiology from the hospitals and confirmed that in his opinion they were more consistent with a diagnosis of mesothelioma than asbestosis. We instructed a histopathologist to examine the tissue samples that had been taken at post mortem, and a diagnosis of mesothelioma that had somehow been missed at post mortem was confirmed.
The claim then settled for its full valuation of £80,000. As Ronald had mesothelioma we are able to recover our legal fees in full from the defendants, meaning that Ronald’s family have received the full compensation due to them
Royds Withy King has a dedicated specialist team of lawyers who are committed to achieving the best possible results for individuals affected by mesothelioma or other industrial diseases. If you or a family member have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related condition or require advice regarding being exposed to asbestos, please do not hesitate to contact us
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