Balfour Beatty issued massive £500k fine by HSE

Balfour Beatty issued massive £500k fine by HSE
Balfour Beatty issued massive £500k fine by HSE

Balfour Beatty issued massive £500k fine by HSE

Balfour Beatty issued massive £500k fine by HSE
Sheffield-based contractor Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions have been hit with a £500k fine after the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) found workers were put at risk of developing a life-changing health condition.

The HSE found in their investigation that Balfour Beatty failed in their duty of care to protect their employees using high-powered hand held tools, which with repetitive use can lead to the presentation of Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS).

HAVS is caused by excessive use of vibratory hand held high powered tools and symptoms can include damage to the nerves, blood vessels and pain and numbness in the joints of the hand, wrist and arm. The condition is so severe that it can lead to disability, creating challenges for a worker to find employment.

The HSE found reported that staff at Balfour Beatty were subjected to potentially harmful levels of vibrations when using high powered hand-held tools such as hydraulic breakers and floor saws over a nine year period between 2002 and 2011.

The investigation also found that the company neglected to conduct risk assessments, failing to put any risk control measures in place providing employees with a suitable system for health surveillance. Balfour Beatty also did not meet their legal requirement to report a number of cases where workers were diagnosed with HAVS to the suitable authorities.

The Sheffield firm pleaded guilty to two breaches which were “Section 2 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974” and “Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995”.

HSE inspector Christine Mellor said after the hearing:

“This case was about failing to protect workers. Exposure to hand-arm vibration is a well-known risk which Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions Ltd. failed to adequately control.

“The company failed to heed warnings. Early health surveillance detected ill health but still this was not acted upon to prevent on-going exposure.

“This is a particularly serious case because of the extent and duration of failures. The breaches were repeated over several years and this resulted in persistent poor compliance.”

A Balfour Beatty spokesperson said:

“The shortcomings in processes identified in this case took place many years ago and were addressed prior to the start of the investigation by the HSE. The judge acknowledged both this and that there was no evidence of anyone coming to harm as a result.

“Balfour Beatty takes its responsibilities both for Health and Safety extremely seriously.”

Roberts Jackson Solicitors are experts in helping sufferers of HAVS gain compensation, with an experienced team ready to help claimants gain access to justice. If you feel you are suffering from symptoms of hand arm vibration syndrome as a result of your work, feel free to get in touch with Roberts Jackson Solicitors either by calling us on 0800 001 4496 or alternatively you can leave your details on one of the contact forms on our website and we’ll be in touch within 24 hours of you leaving your enquiry.

Employers are urged to scrap off-the-shelf safety practices – New web-based advice on manual handling

Employers are urged to scrap off-the-shelf safety practices - New web-based advice on manual handling
Employers are urged to scrap off-the-shelf safety practices - New web-based advice on manual handling

Employers are urged to scrap off-the-shelf safety practices – New web-based advice on manual handling

Employers are urged to scrap off-the-shelf safety practices - New web-based advice on manual handling
The Health and Safety Executive has launched new support for employers regarding manual handling, stressing that simplistic one-size-fits-all advice is unhelpful and companies need to use a more tailored approach to keep their workers safe.

Manual handling, relating to moving items by lifting, lowering, pushing or pulling, accounts for 22% of all non-fatal accidents in the workplace, according to the HSE. In the past, advice has been based on simplistic techniques such as bending at the knees when lifting, but the HSE has now launched a new web based advice tool which was developed with input from businesses, trade unions and safety organisations. The new advice is aimed at helping employers carry out risk assessments and develop their own safety methods depending on their own particular circumstances and environment.

HSE’s Health and Work Portfolio Manager Geoff Cox said: “Our research shows that simplistic training involving bending your knees to lift a cardboard box is just a waste of time and money, it just doesn’t make any difference. The overall aim is to avoid and reduce manual handling, and that’s where employers should start if their workforce faces manual handling risks. Don’t start with training, start with re-organising and redesigning your working practices. If you do need staff training, and there are many residual risks where this is the case, then this needs to be customised and professionally delivered. Any such training should be based on observations of current working practices, and should be informed by the views and experience of the workforce.”

In 2016/17, 507,000 workers reported suffering from work-related musculoskeletal disorders and 8.9 million working days lost as a result.

Anyone in any line of work can suffer from a manual handling accident but the industries most affected are construction, agriculture, forestry transportation and storage, and health work.

Fatima Bibi at Industrial Disease specialist Roberts Jackson, said:

“We see so many cases where a musculoskeletal disorder could have been prevented. It’s great that the HSE is putting the onus on employers to take a step back and think about their processes and environment, involving their employees in coming up with ways of lowering the amount of manual handling required and improving safety measures. The web advice is a great starting place for all companies, especially SME’s.”

Chief Executive Officer of the BSIF, Alan Murray: “It’s simple and straightforward – the web-based advice should set businesses in the right direction.” The full web-based advice can be viewed at http://www.hse.gov.uk/msd/external-help.htm.

Wake up to Diabetes – Roberts Jackson’s Employees Raise Awareness for Men’s Health Week

Wake up to Diabetes - Roberts Jackson's Employees Raise Awareness for Men's Health Week
Wake up to Diabetes - Roberts Jackson's Employees Raise Awareness for Men's Health Week

Wake up to Diabetes – Roberts Jackson’s Employees Raise Awareness for Men’s Health Week

Wake up to Diabetes - Roberts Jackson's Employees Raise Awareness for Men's Health Week

Despite one in ten men in the UK being affected by diabetes, and men being 26% more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than women, they are still less likely to be aware that they could be in danger of suffering from the disease.

Nimish Patel, a lawyer at Roberts Jackson Solicitors, is supporting Men’s Health Week 11 – 17 June which this year raises awareness of diabetes.  Nimish himself suffers from Type 2 diabetes.

“I have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes for 5 years myself and I wanted to support Men’s Health Week by warning about the scale of this problem in the male population. Men are more than twice as likely as women to have a major amputation and they are also more likely than women to develop diabetic retinopathy which can cause blindness as result, but in general most men are unlikely to consider themselves as being at risk or consider what they are eating despite family history.  

Diabetes brings with it the risk of so many complications, including that can affect your general health and major organs but it is avoidable if your diet is monitored at an early stage.  I now have to check my blood sugar readings three times a day and it certainly has restrictions on what you can eat and do even though my BMI was only 27!  I also think that some men believe that because they play sports , they will not suffer from diabetes. However, this is more about recognising your family history and what sugars and carbs you are taking on board so you can’t escape just because you exercise.             

 It is on the rise and is more frequently being diagnosed in younger people, despite it being known as a disease of middle aged and older people.”

Anyone who is worried about developing Type 2 diabetes can take Diabetes UK’s online Risk Score test to find out their level of risk before visiting their GP for a proper test.

A toxic combination

Martin Tod, Chief Executive of the Men’s Health Forum said:

“Men are more likely to get diabetes. More likely to suffer complications.  More likely to face amputation as a result of diabetes. And more likely to die from diabetes.

Diabetes is hitting men especially hard, but too little is being done to understand the problem and tackle the problem. The Men’s Health Forum wants to see a serious programme of research and investment to ensure men get the support and care they need to prevent and manage diabetes.

The toxic combination of ever more men being overweight, men getting diabetes at a lower BMI and health services that don’t work well enough for working age men is leading to a crisis. We need urgent action.” 

Fighting Men’s Health Struggles

Along with Nimish, Roberts Jackson’s Cost Draftsman, Aaron Press (Sensei), who runs a Japanese Jujitsu Dojo in Middlewich and assists at another in Macclesfield, is raising money throughout the week for Men’s Health. The Chiryoku Ryu Dojo is promoting a healthy lifestyle by offering all men over the age of 14 years their first 4 weeks of lessons for free. In addition, if any of those new members have diagnosed Diabetes then they will not have to pay their subscription fee either and the equivalent will be matched and used as a donation. They are also offering out free fruit and water throughout the week in order to get as many people involved as possible.

All money raised by the Chiryoku Dojo throughout Men’s Health Week will be donated to the Men’s Health Forum and Diabetes UK. To learn more about Aaron and the team and how you can get involved, visit their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/ChiryokuRyuMiddlewich/.

Oldham to Gibraltar

On top of raising awareness for Men’s Health the firm has recently sponsored a charity bike ride by a group of local firefighters called the Blazing Saddles. Their aim is to cycle from Oldham to Gibraltar over 15 days which will see them travel through England, France and Spain before finally reaching their destination in Gibraltar after a gruelling 1,674 mile bike ride.

Roberts Jackson has happily donated £1,000 towards the effort in the hope that the Blazing Saddles reach their total target of £15,000. You can sponsor the team by visiting their Virgin Money Giving page here: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-display/showROFundraiserPage?userUrl=BlazingSaddles2&pageUrl=1

NHS Trust criticized after patient dies after drinking cleaning fluid

NHS Trust criticized after patient dies after drinking cleaning fluid
NHS Trust criticized after patient dies after drinking cleaning fluid

NHS Trust criticized after patient dies after drinking cleaning fluid

NHS Trust criticized after patient dies after drinking cleaning fluid
Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust has been criticised by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after a patient apparently died after drinking cleaning fluid that had not been safely stored. Inspectors discovered that Joan Blaber, 85, believed the liquid to be orange juice at Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton last year.

The inspectors visited the hospital a month after Ms Blaber’s death and discovered hazardous substances left on unattended cleaning trolleys. Other noxious substances were found in unlocked cupboards which were easily accessible by patients.

The CQC deputy chief inspector of hospital inspection for the South, Amanda Stanford, said that the trust had been told to ensure secure storage for all projects subject to the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (CoSHH) regulations.

“The regulations governing the safe use of these cleaning products are there to protect people from harm. During our inspection we found that these chemicals were not always being kept safely,” she said.

Dr Rob Haigh, medical director of the trust, said: “In the seven months since the inspection, we have taken significant steps to improve the way we manage potentially hazardous substances both in terms of staff training and the way these substances are stored and used, addressing the points published in today’s report.”

Hayley McBride, specialist in CoSHH cases at Roberts Jackson, said this case should act as a reminder to those working in health and social care:

“People might think that accidents involving hazardous substances only happen in chemical or industrial plants but this sad case just goes to show that all organisations need to have proper systems in place to keep dangerous items out of reach. There is plenty of free advice on the Health and Safety Executive’s website, so I would urge employers to waste no time in implementing a CoSHH strategy.”
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Construction workers oblivious of asbestos danger despite wide exposure

Construction workers oblivious of asbestos danger despite wide exposure
Construction workers oblivious of asbestos danger despite wide exposure

Construction workers oblivious of asbestos danger despite wide exposure

Construction workers oblivious of asbestos danger despite wide exposure

A recent survey by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) has revealed worrying levels of ignorance about the dangers of asbestos, despite one in four respondents believing they may have been exposed to the deadly material.

Two Thirds of London workers unaware asbestos can cause cancer

 The survey revealed further surprising and concerning statistics.  One third of respondents did not know that asbestos can cause the cancer known as mesothelioma.  London workers were especially of concern as only 37% understood the risk.

No idea of procedures when asbestos discovered

Nearly one in five respondents said they would be uncertain or would not know what to do if they discovered asbestos on a job and one third did not check asbestos registers for a site.  15 per cent were unaware registers, which must be accessed prior to any work undertaken, even existed.

15% of workers never informed about dangers

 Whilst 59% were trained regularly about the dangers of asbestos, 15% said they had never been informed.  One in five had no idea what they would do if they came across the substance.

 Work-related cancer claims 742,000 lives a year worldwide

The Institution issued the statistics at the launch of the fourth phase of the No Time To Lose campaign, which raises awareness of the 742000 work-related deaths globally every year and aims to explain the causes of occupational cancer and help businesses take action.

Roberts Jackson supports awareness campaign

 Asbestos disease expert, Brian Robinson, from industrial disease specialists Roberts Jackson, said:

“With 5000 people dying from asbestos-related mesothelioma every year in the UK, we need to ensure no one, especially those most at risk of exposure, should be unaware of the dangers.  Companies, especially small outfits, can save lives by raising awareness amongst their workers.  There are plenty of free resources on IOSH’s website as well as the Health & Safety Executive’s website.  Let’s ensure no one is ignorant of the deadly dangers of this material”

Roberts Jackson sponsors Oldham to Gibraltar Charity Bike Ride

Roberts Jackson sponsors Oldham to Gibraltar Charity Bike Ride
Roberts Jackson sponsors Oldham to Gibraltar Charity Bike Ride

Roberts Jackson sponsors Oldham to Gibraltar Charity Bike Ride

Roberts Jackson sponsors Oldham to Gibraltar Charity Bike Ride
Roberts Jackson Solicitors are proud to be sponsoring a team of fire fighters named ‘Blazing Saddles’ who are taking on their fourth biking challenge, this time from Oldham to Gibraltar in just two weeks, from 14 to 28 July 2018.

The bike ride will involve a 1,600-mile trip from Oldham to Gibraltar, crossing the Pyrenees and stopping at Le Havre on the way to pay homage to fallen soldiers. The ride this year is called the 100 Year Bike Ride, referring to the centenary of the end of World War One and 100 years of the Fire Brigades Union.

The idea for Blazing Saddles came about following a personal tragedy by one of the Oldham firefighters. Several years later the team are in preparation for what will be their 4th and most ambitious charity ride. The first 3 rides have seen the team tackle the UK’s biggest peaks and cycled the distance between each one and in 2016 they cycled back to Oldham from Oldham’s twin town Kranj in Slovenia.

This year the Blazing Saddles are aiming to raise as much money as possible for four different charities. The Fire Fighters charity which supports past and present fire fighters and their families with health and well-being, rehabilitation and nursing services. MIND which provides advice and support for anyone experiencing a mental health problem. Sands – a charity that works to support anyone affected by the death of a baby; improve the care bereaved parents receive; and create a world where fewer babies die. Cyclists Fighting Cancer which enables children and young people living with cancer across the UK to regain their physical fitness, strength and confidence by giving them new bikes, adapted trikes, tandems, other equipment and support.

The Blazing Saddles have their very own website where you can see the route they are taking and meet the team. If you would like to donate to this fantastic cause, you can do so by visiting their Virgin Money Giving page here: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/BlazingSaddles2

You can follow the team on Twitter as they head towards their biggest ride yet https://twitter.com/The100YearRide or just search their handle @The100YearRide

Deaf Awareness Week 2018 – understanding for those suffering hearing loss

Deaf Awareness Week 2018 – understanding for those suffering hearing loss
Deaf Awareness Week 2018 – understanding for those suffering hearing loss

Deaf Awareness Week 2018 – understanding for those suffering hearing loss

Deaf Awareness Week 2018
14 – 20 May 2018 is Deaf Awareness Week #DAW18.

Organised by the charity Action on Hearing Loss, the week aims to promote an understanding of what it is like to suffer hearing loss, and to encourage people to help others by speaking clearly without shouting.

It is believed that 11 million people in the UK suffer from hearing loss – that’s one in six of us – and this is estimated to increase to 15.6 million by 2035.

The most common cause of hearing loss is ageing. The second most common is noise-induced hearing loss, when someone is exposed to loud noise for long periods of time, often in a noisy workplace. Many people don’t experience the hearing loss until years after they were exposed to the excessive noise, making it hard to work out what caused it.

The Health & Safety Executive estimated that in 2016, 20,000 people working in Great Britain suffered from Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) caused or made worse by work.

Workers within such industries as construction and manufacturing as well as tradesmen and nightclubs are susceptible to hearing damage. Meanwhile, those who have been employed in shipyards, coalmines and textile mills may have also been exposed to a lot of noise pollution.

If provided with the correct safety equipment and procedures, workers are less likely to develop a hearing problem. However if adequate protection is not available, employees exposed to loud noise are at a higher risk of losing their hearing.

Temporary hearing loss or ringing in the ears (tinnitus) are early warning signs of noise induced hearing loss. If you suffer from these symptoms, we would recommend that you inform your employer as they can implement additional health and safety measures in order to prevent your hearing from worsening.

We would recommend that you visit your GP for an official diagnosis. They can refer you to a medical specialist, who will be able to identify your hearing problem and determine whether or not it has been caused by your working environment. Alternatively, you can get in contact with the Roberts Jackson team directly and we will organise a medical assessment on your behalf.

How do I claim for loss of hearing?

The claims process is simple and straightforward with Roberts Jackson. Once we have gathered all the information we need from you, a dedicated team will look after your claim from start to finish. We will also try to keep contact minimal, allowing you to stay up-to-date with the process while also giving you an opportunity to get your life back to normal.

For further information on pursuing a claim for compensation with us, visit our claim guide where we run through the process step-by-step.

How much compensation will I receive for noise induced hearing loss?

The compensation awarded to noise induced hearing loss sufferers can differ from person to person.

Roberts Jackson solicitors are dedicated to achieving the best possible outcome for all our claimants. The legal team will work hard to calculate and negotiate your payout to make sure that you are fully compensated for any pain and suffering, financial setbacks and medical treatment you face both now and in the future.

Can I still claim if my former employer or organisation is no longer trading?

You can still pursue a claim for compensation if the responsible organisation is no longer in business, as long as you are within the three year time limit. Our solicitors will get in contact with the insurance provider directly, who will be responsible for providing you with the compensation you deserve.

Furniture maker fined for dust exposure

Furniture maker fined for dust exposure
Furniture maker fined for dust exposure

Furniture maker fined for dust exposure

woodworker dust exposure

A furniture manufacturer based in Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, has been fined after it left employees exposed to hardwood dust, a substance know to cause occupational asthma and nasal cancer.

An extraction fan in the workshop was discovered to be faulty when it was tested during an HSE inspection in 2016, and despite previous advice given by the HSE, the company was failing to ensure proper safety standards.

On 2 May, Adrena Furniture Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching Regulations 7(1) and 9(2)(a) of the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002 at Luton Magistrates’ Court and was fined £8,000.

HSE Inspector Sandra Dias said:

“Andrena Furniture Ltd was fully aware of the health and safety standards it needed to maintain. Breathing in dust can cause life-changing lung disease or make existing conditions worse. Thousands of people die from work-related lung diseases every year, often due to continued exposure over a long period of time.

“Everyone has the right to go home healthy from work and employers must do the right thing to protect their workers and ensure this happens.
“This case should serve as a warning to others that HSE takes seriously repeated breaches of health and safety law that exposes employees to health risks.”

Occupational Asthma is a common work-related condition among woodworkers due to wood dust particles in the air along with fumes from lacquer. These fumes not only cause difficulty to your breathing but have also been linked to kidney failure, nervous system damage and loss of vision.

It is possible to make a claim for a breathing problem that has been made worse by fumes that have been inhaled during working hours. Visiting your GP is the best way to establish what has caused your breathing condition or what has made a pre-existing condition worse but we would also advise you inform your employer so they can take measures to assist you and prevent further exposure.

Roberts Jackson Solicitors are on hand to provide FREE legal advice ranging from – running a No Win No Fee claim to assistance with state benefits that may be owed to you.

• Mild Asthma, Breathing Issues Up to £3,400
• Relatively Mild Symptoms £7,000 to £12,000
• Bronchitis and Wheezing £12,000 to £17,000
• Chronic Asthma £17,000 to £28,000
• Severe Disabling Asthma £28,000 to £43,000*

*All compensation amounts based on the Judicial College guidelines (formerly the Judicial Studies Board guidelines)

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Breast Screening Error – Patient Rights

Breast Screening Error – Patient Rights
Breast Screening Error – Patient Rights

Breast Screening Error – Patient Rights

Breast Screening Error
The House of Commons yesterday announced that an IT error within the NHS has led to 450,000 women in the UK between the ages of 68 and 71 missing invitations to attend breast screening appointments. The failings could have led to up to 270 women in England alone having their lives shortened according to the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, with thousands of others missing the opportunity for earlier detection of tumours as the screening would detect tumours which were too small to see or feel.

The issue has most likely affected women between the ages of 70-79, and 309,000 people will now be offered catch up screenings. Women who have been affected are being advised that if they are concerned to contact a dedicated hotline on 0800 169 2692 and that they will receive a letter by the end of May.

A dedicated inquiry is being set up and will be chaired by Lynda Thomas, CEO of Macmillan Cancer Support and Professor Martin Gore from the Royal Marsden Hospital, who will report back in six months. The Government have apologised unreservedly for their error.

This is the second NHS failing that has been brought to light around women’s health within the last 18 months. The vaginal mesh scandal was recently brought to the public’s attention by the media when it emerged that many women who had undergone a childbirth-related procedure had suffered due to an implant that is aimed at permanently reinforcing the vaginal wall that is weakened during child birth.

What are a patient’s rights?

Public or private health organisations have a duty of care to their patients to ensure that they receive appropriate treatment at all times, so if there is clear evidence of delayed or incorrect diagnosis, unnecessary pain and suffering, surgical errors or mistakes that have led to early death, a claim may exist. The breast screening failures could have breached this duty and women affected leading to a late diagnosis.

Late diagnosis can cause unnecessary pain and suffering, anxiety and worry for the patient and their family. Patients may have undergone unnecessary treatment such as chemotherapy that could have been avoided. Detection at screenings may identify tumours that should be highlighted for further investigation and one in three cancer patients are over 70 years old but there are arguments in relation to the risks and benefits argument regarding treatment for patients who are over 70 years old. Based on the Health Secretary’s comments, it is evident that the issue has certainly led to lives being shortened in many cases.

Clinical negligence expert, Nimish Patel, of Roberts Jackson solicitors has commented on the recent failings:

“The early detection of breast cancer is vital and the likelihood of breast cancer increases above the age of 50 but women under the age of 70 are unable to request a screening themselves. The basis of the Age X trial was to offer screenings to women between the ages of 47 and 73 and in particular those who were potentially at risk, by letter every three years.

The NHS write to 2.5 million women every year and there are 2 million screenings as a result but Jeremy Hunt said that it was surprising that women had not come forward to ask about their letters. It should not be for the patient to request an invitation to a screening which ought to have been automatic. In these circumstances, the onus has been on vulnerable women between the ages of 70-79 to demand screenings when they were unaware that they may even be at risk which is wholly unreasonable.

One in 8 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime and early detection would lead to non –invasive treatment which is more likely to be successful.”

World Asthma Day sees no reduction in instances of Occupational Asthma

World Asthma Day sees no reduction in instances of Occupational Asthma
World Asthma Day sees no reduction in instances of Occupational Asthma

World Asthma Day sees no reduction in instances of Occupational Asthma

World Asthma Day 2018
May 1 2018 is the 20th annual World Asthma Day, an event held each May to raise awareness of asthma worldwide. This year’s theme is “NEVER TOO EARLY, NEVER TOO LATE. It’s always the right time to address airways disease.”

It is estimated that there are two to three hundred new cases of occupational asthma seen by chest physicians each year in the UK, which is generally considered to be an underestimate of the true scale with many victims suffering silently. In the past ten years there has been no change in the number of cases. Occupational asthma is the most common cause of adult onset asthma and makes up 9 to 15 per cent of cases of asthma in adults of working age.

In some industries up to 10 per cent of employees develop occupational asthma.
Occupations with the highest rates of occupational asthma include baking, painting, healthcare, wood-working, agriculture, animal work and hairdressing.

Client wins £10,000 for workplace asthma

Roberts Jackson’s client was recently awarded £10,000 after his asthma was severely exacerbated by his work as a painter and decorator.

Having been diagnosed with asthma in 2003, our client’s symptoms escalated to chronic asthma due to his exposure at work. During his employment he used oil-based paints and a solvent-based window cleaner, both of which irritated his asthma. Working indoors with little ventilation only made matters worse. He transported these chemicals along with bleach and turpentine in his van but his employer refused to place a partition in his van to minimise his exposure to fumes. The claimant was forced to buy his own mask and fan after his employer provided inadequate equipment. The firm’s client found that his symptoms only improved when he was away from the work environment, indicating that this was clearly a case of occupational asthma.

Roberts Jackson’s associate who worked on the case, Kelsey Whitehouse, said the case supports the theme for this year’s World Asthma Day:

“As this case proves, it’s never too early and never too late for employers to meet the health and safety requirements expected of them. In this case if the employer had listened to the concerns of our client and provided him with adequate PPE (personal protective equipment), it could have saved our client so much pain and discomfort. With the number of cases of occupational asthma remaining static for 10 years, it’s clear that employers still don’t understand the risks and their duty to protect their workers.”