On average, around seven deaths from mesothelioma (an aggressive asbestos-related cancer) occur every single day in the UK. The sad fact is that most of those deaths could have been avoided if employers had taken precautions to protect their workers from exposure to asbestos.  To raise awareness of the issues surrounding asbestos exposure, the diseases it causes and the ways in which victims, and their families, can gain access to support and advice, we have brought together some of the UK’s news stories related to asbestos during February 2018.

Residents living near to a fire that broke out on 8th February in a warehouse in Rochdale were warned that ash and debris from the fire could contain asbestos.  For this reason, the residents were urged not to clean up any of the ash that may have fallen on their property.  Instead, the council arranged for trained specialist cleaners to remove any substances thought to have come from the fire in order to avoid health risks to the residents.

Brighton Police Station is currently undergoing a schedule of extensive refurbishment, but the costs of the project have now risen considerably due to asbestos being unexpectedly found within the building. The asbestos, which hadn’t been previously recorded as present in any earlier surveys undertaken prior to the renovation commencing, is expected to add around £170,000 to the total costs and will delay the completion of the project.

A school in Kilburn has closed its ‘greenspace’ area due to fears over pupil and staff safety because of an asbestos-contaminated cemetery located behind the school.  The greenspace includes fruit trees and vegetables previously planted by the pupils of the school, but the school has restricted access to the area until the contamination, found in soil at Paddington Old Cemetery, is resolved.  An investigation carried out by the local council and specialist partners has revealed that grave diggers working in the cemetery are at risk of asbestos exposure.  A resolution to the problem is being worked on by the council and is ongoing.

A container, thought to be holding significant amounts of asbestos material, has been stolen from a property in Yorkshire.  The contents of the container are considered a hazard to health and require expert disposal.  Humberside Police are still looking for the missing container and its hazardous load.

A man from Gwent, Wales, who has been seeking justice for the death of his father from mesothelioma, an asbestos-related disease, has received an undisclosed settlement from the insurers of his father’s previous employer, Newport Forge.  Graham Chilton passed away just two months after being diagnosed with mesothelioma, at the age of 65.  His sudden passing was a great shock to his loved ones, including his son, Leigh, who was determined that justice be done.

If you, or family member, have been affected by an asbestos-related illness and would like to discuss your options or find out about the support available, please get in touch with our friendly and expert asbestos claim team.