When people think of asbestos it is thought of as something used in the early 20th century. However there is evidence that people knew of the material as far back as Ancient Greece.
Unfortunately what was once considered a versatile construction material was found to be very harmful. If you have been exposed to asbestos, it is worth knowing how to make asbestos related claims.
Facts about asbestos
- There are six different types of material that can be classified as asbestos including amosite, chryostile and crocidolite (blue). All types are dangerous but require different ways of removing the material which it can take time to be sure that it has been completely cleared from an environment.
- Over 2300 people died in 2010 of mesothelioma, a lung condition caused by asbestos. This is compared to 153 in 1968.
- While the numbers have peaked in Europe and the United States other countries are reporting more deaths due to fewer regulations and less removal of materials.
- Conditions can also be aggravated if you are a smoker.
Why asbestos is dangerous
Prolonged exposure to asbestos can result in a number of different conditions. Even people who have to remove the material have to be careful as exposure during the removal and disposal of it can potentially result in a condition developing.
A big problem is that the fibres can be inhaled through the lungs. This can then result in a lot of lung problems including breathing difficulties and an increased risk of lung cancer.
While the condition is often associated with people who work in primary industries (dock workers, warehouse workers, people work in construction and so forth) there is also the danger if you work in an office that is later found to have asbestos in it.
Making a claim
With asbestos related claims one of the problems is in proving the fault of people involved. For example a construction site ought to be cleared of the material. However if a company knows that the material is present and fails to remove it (thus leading to people developing conditions from exposure) then it is possible to pursue a claim.
A legal representative ought to be able to demonstrate that your symptoms are as a result of exposure to the material. Crucially they also need to demonstrate that this exposure could have been avoided.
Some people are nervous about claiming against an employer, fearing that it will end up costing them in the longer term. However if you suffer a condition due to exposure and end up not being able to work for a long period of time then you ought to be compensated for your lost earnings.
Accident Advice Helpline is available 24 hours a day. Contact us to find out how we can help you get the compensation you deserve.
Date Published: October 18, 2013
Author: David Brown