A Bath woman is to receive £76,250 in damages from the Ministry of Defence after her father died as a result of asbestos exposure while working on board naval ships in Portsmouth.
Leslie Elwall, 85, died two years ago after developing mesothelioma as a direct result of his coming into contact with asbestos when he worked on board ships such as HMS Ark Royal, HMS Albion and others.
His daughter, Irene Morris, brought the compensation claim on her father’s behalf after his death.
The family’s solicitor, Brigitte Chandler, of Swindon law firm Charles Lucas & Marshall and one of the country’s leading specialists in asbestos law, explained that although Mr Elwall worked on naval ships he was still able to make a claim for compensation because he was a civilian.
“Unfortunately there is Crown immunity for members of the armed forces who are not allowed to bring claims for exposure to asbestos,” she said. “However Mr Elwall was a civilian which is why his daughter was able to make a claim on behalf of his estate.”
Mr Elwall joined the Ministry of Defence in Bath in 1947 to work as a draughtsman and technical officer. His job meant he had to live on board ships moored in Portsmouth for two to three weeks at a time. When he was on board, the ships were often being re-fitted which meant asbestos lagging on cylinders, boilers and pipes was exposed.
“Asbestos continued to be used on ships during the 40s, 50s and 60s, even though the Government was well aware of the dangers,” said Brigitte Chandler. “Many people have become ill as a result and the numbers dying from mesothelioma are expected to rise for a number of years.”
There is a regional charity to provide support for families and widows of asbestos sufferers in the South West. It can be contacted on: 01793 813616 or firstname.lastname@example.org / Swindon & SouthWest Asbestosgroup Website.
Please contact Brigitte Chandler on 01793 511055 or email@example.com
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