The first cases of asbestos related disease were noted going back to 1900. The term “asbestosis” has been in use since 1927. In 1930 a Government commissioned demonstrated the link between asbestosis and exposure to asbestos dust. The dangers were such that legislation was introduced to control exposure to asbestos in the form of The Asbestos Industry Regulations 1931.
Asbestos exposure is therefore seen as a historic problem. However, it is clear that that is not the case. Many years after the link between asbestos exposure and asbestosis was demonstrated, people are still being knowingly exposed to this extremely dangerous material by their employers.
Between February 2003 and May 2012 Stirling Council allowed dangerous asbestos to remain in the basement of its headquarters, potentially exposing anybody who entered the basement to the dust, despite several inspections highlighting the danger.
It beggars belief that a Government building which was inspected in 2003, 2010, 2011, with each inspection warning that asbestos was present and required removal, still contained asbestos in 2012. This should never have happened and it should never happen again.
We have represented and continue to represent thousands of clients who were exposed to asbestos in workplaces they thought were safe. Employers knew of the catastrophic consequences of exposure to asbestos dust and exposed workers to it anyway. This cannot be allowed to continue.
We see the truly horrifying diseases which result from asbestos exposure on a daily basis and implore all employers, including Local Authorities, to take seriously the ongoing danger posed by asbestos in workplaces.
For further information on asbestos visit our asbestos faq section.
Blog by Iain Corbett, Lawyer