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Large payout for asbestos victim, from Hockley, who worked at Shoebury MOD site
AN ELECTRICIAN suffering from terminal cancer has won a six-figure payout after being exposed to deadly asbestos during his work at the military base in Shoebury.
The 64-year old from Hockley, who does not want to be named, was diagnosed with mesothelioma in April 2012 after suffering from pain in his ribs, a persistent cough and breathlessness.
He underwent treatment at St Bartholomew’s Hospital in London, but has since been given the devastating news the cancer has spread to his brain.
The father-of-two was exposed to asbestos while working at the Ministry of Defence’s Shoebury munitions testing site, for his employer the Ministry of Public Buildings and Works, now the Department for Communities and Local Government, between 1965 and 1970.
Lawyers at Irwin Mitchell in London negotiated an undisclosed six-figure sum for him which will help cover the cost of care when his condition deteriorates and further limits his independence.
He says it feels “like some justice has been done”.
His job involved drilling holes in walls and ceilings which were clad with asbestos in workshops and research units.
He said: “After drilling holes in walls and ceilings, I had to sweep up the dust and debris the work had created. I was an apprentice.
“We didn’t really think anything of breathing in the dust as we worked because we were never told of the dangers or given any safety gear to wear.
“During my apprenticeship, I worked in various buildings on the Shoebury site. I did electrical work as part of the refurbishment of buildings. When we were doing refurbishments all of the trades were working together and I believe I was exposed to asbestos dust from colleagues lagging pipes near me.”
The man began feeling unwell in February 2012 and was diagnosed with mesothelioma two months later following tests and scans.
He added: “It was devastating to find out that asbestos exposure had given me cancer and that my symptoms will get worse.
“My illness is terminal so it’s heartbreaking for my family, and now it has spread to my brain.
“We are all anxious about what the future holds, but I amgrateful to have the support around me from my loved ones.
“The settlement will be a big help financially when it comes to my care and will help support my family to look after me and help me to battle on against this incurable disease.
“It feels like justice has been done as my former employer should have done something to protect me and my colleagues.”
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