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Asbestos danger highlighted after property firm fined
The importance of protecting workers and the public from the dangers of asbestos hit the headlines again this week, following a case in which a property development company admitted exposing its employees to the so-called 'silent killer'.
The Colchester-based firm was fined £15,000 at Bournemouth Crown Court, after pleading guilty to breaching two Control of Asbestos regulations.
Bridget Collier, industrial disease specialist with Fentons Solicitors LLP, said the firm failed to carry out a sufficient assessment as to whether asbestos might be present at the building, which was being converted into residential property.
"Amazingly, this issue only came to light when neighbours raised concerns about the amount of dust being generated at the building site," said Miss Collier, a partner with Fentons. "After a Health and Safety Executive inspector visited the site, they concluded that the development company had potentially exposed both its employees and the surrounding public to dangerous asbestos.
"Employers have a duty to check for the presence of asbestos and ensure it is both handled and removed safely," said Bridget. "Exposure to asbestos is the most serious occupational health issue we face, with thousands of people dying every year from asbestos related diseases."
As well as being fined £15,000, the developers were also ordered to pay costs of more than £10,000.
How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims for victims of industrial diseases including asbestos-related lung cancer and mesothelioma.
If you think that you have a case or require further information contact Fentons on 0800 019 1297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.
Source - HSE
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