Royds client wins industrial disease case
A former London docker who was diagnosed with a rare form of lung cancer (mesothelioma) after being exposed to asbestos has won his claim against the Port of London Authority.
The man, who was represented by solicitors from Royds Solicitors’ personal injury department, commenced legal action after developing mesothelioma almost 50 years after ceasing work in the docks.
The case was heard at the High Court’s Queen’s Bench Division earlier this year and has been settled in favour of the claimant.
The court heard that the man had worked at the London Docks between 1960 and 1967.
The focus of the proceedings was a particular incident in around 1964, when the claimant was asked to help unload hessian sacks of white asbestos from a small vessel at the South West India Docks.
The workers had voiced some concern about the job at the time, but were advised by a union representative that they would only need to worry if the substance had been blue asbestos.
The court found that the central question was whether the Port of London Authority had been the claimant’s employer on the date in question. Having considered the evidence, he concluded that they were.
James Millar Craig, head of Royds’ Personal Injury, Clinical Negligence and Insurance Department, said it was an important result.
“Claims of this nature are often made more difficult by the fact that the management of the dockyards in decades gone by was notoriously complicated. We are pleased that having heard evidence from a number of different sources, the Judge decided that the Port of London Authority was the employer and was therefore liable for our client’s exposure to asbestos.”