Dying Man Wins Compensation for Asbestos Disease
Date online: 25/02/2011
A telephone engineer who is suffering from mesothelioma, a deadly asbestos-related disease, has won his battle for compensation from British Telecom (BT).
Bernard Mottram, now 82, was employed by BT from 1970 until 1991, installing phone lines at office blocks, schools, factories, hospitals and military bases. One of his jobs was to install equipment in a secret government-owned bunker in Corsham, Wiltshire. During the Cold War, the underground complex was designed for use in case of a nuclear attack. Mr Mottram claims that he was exposed to asbestos during his time working at the site. He also alleges that he was neither warned about the dangers of inhaling asbestos fibres nor provided with suitable protective clothing or equipment.
Mesothelioma often only becomes apparent decades after the original exposure and there is no cure. The prognosis for those diagnosed with the disease is poor. Mr Mottram’s doctors say he has only months to live.
BT denied that Mr Mottram was exposed to asbestos whilst working at the bunker. However, the company has agreed to pay £115,000 in settlement of his claim.
Asbestos-related diseases are the most common cause of death associated with work in the UK and are responsible for an estimated 4,000 deaths each year.
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