Archive for December, 2010

Widow of “Classroom Cancer” Victim Wins Mesothelioma Compensation

Posted on: December 31st, 2010

The widow of a chemistry teacher, who often taught classes using asbestos mats, has agreed an out-of-court settlement after losing her husband to mesothelioma cancer.

Jim Sellwood, previously of Middleton-in-Teesdale, County Durham, died in November 2008 from mesothelioma cancer – cancer which is directly caused by exposure to asbestos.

Through his long and successful teaching career at York’s St. John University, he had taught his students according to the university’s approved textbook “Chemistry, Collected Experiments” which advocated using asbestos mats.

Sadly, his love of teaching chemistry ultimately resulted in his death and, in an out-of-court settlement, St. John University acknowledged liability for their part in his mesothelioma cancer and agreed an undisclosed compensation amount for Jim’s widow, Mary.

Fall on Steps Compensation Leads to 35.000 Pounds Award

Posted on: December 24th, 2010

A double-amputee, who fell and fractured his elbow on the steps of a County Down housing estate, has been awarded 35,000 pounds in fall on steps compensation by the High Court in Belfast.

Colin Adamson from Bangor, County Down, lost both his legs in a car accident in 1991 and has been confined to a wheelchair ever since. His fall on steps accident occurred when he lost his balance and fell due to a cracked flagstone, while visiting a friend at the Keaney Gardens Housing Estate.

Colin’s injuries meant that he had to have surgery on the elbow to insert supporting plates and screws and, due to his treatment, his mobility has been severely impaired plus it has affected Colin’s gait and his already limited walking abilities. After taking legal guidance, Colin sued the Department of Regional Development for failing to maintain the footpath.

In the subsequent hearing at Belfast High Court, the Department of Regional Development were found negligent in adhering to Article 8 of the Roads (Northern Ireland) Order 1993 and an award of 35,000 pounds compensation was made by Lord Chief Justice Sir Declan Morgan.

BT Engineer Asbestos Compensation of 115,000 Pounds Awarded

Posted on: December 19th, 2010

A Wiltshire man, who contracted mesothelomia cancer while employed by BT in a former secret government bunker in Corsham, is to receive 115,000 pounds asbestos compensation from the company.

Bernard Mottram, now 82, installed telephone lines in the 1990’s in the 35 acre underground complex, and alleged that the mesothelomia cancer he now suffers from is directly connected to asbestos in the site, which was originally equipped during the Cold War in case of nuclear attack.

Bernard, who resides in Bath in Wiltshire and has only months to live, also alleged that BT were negligent by not telling him that asbestos was present in the complex, and by failing to provide any safety equipment or asbestos-related training.

BT deny that Bernard’s sickness is due to asbestos being present at Corsham, but have agreed to an asbestos compensation settlement of 115,000 pounds for non-specific exposure during his employment with the company.

Largest Occupational Lung Disease Claim in MG Compensation Case

Posted on: December 17th, 2010

Former workers for an MG Rover subsidiary – Powertrain Ltd – are to receive a joint settlement of almost 1 million pounds after an agreement was reached in what experts believe was the largest outbreak of occupational lung disease in the world.

The compensation is to be divided between 79 metalworkers working at the company’s Longbridge manufacturing plant who sustained the breathing disease alveolitis when fluids used to lubricate their machines were incorrectly stored.

Bacteria and other dangerous substances developed in the fluids, and when they were used on the metalworkers’ machines formed a harmful mist which was inhaled by the employees. The illnesses were first recorded in 2004 following an investigation by the Health and Safety Executive and affected about 12 per cent of the workforce.

After a seven year legal wrangle, workers are now to receive their compensation, even though MG Rover went into administration in 2005.

Racial Discrimination Compensation Award of 52,382 Pounds

Posted on: December 11th, 2010

A Polish woman, who was forced to quit her job due to racial and sexual discrimination, has been awarded 52,382 pounds in her claim for constructive dismissal.

Marzena Urnbanska-Kopowska from Dunmurry, Northern Ireland, was working with local company Mac’s Quality Foods as a cleaner from September 2006 until July 2008. During this time, Marzena was abused, degraded and treated with contempt due to her nationality and sex.

An employment tribunal was told how a male co-worker had stripped to his underpants and pressed himself against her, and how she was frequently sworn at in Polish by her Irish manager. It was also alleged that Marzena was given degrading tasks to do that were not given to native workers.

When Marzena attempted to bring her treatment to the attention of her employers, her complaints were ignored, and eventually Marzena had to resign from her position as she could not handle the insults and harassment.

Mac’s Quality Foods refuted the claims, but the employment tribunal found in favour of Marzena – awarding her 31,049 pounds for unfair dismissal, 20,000 pounds for racial discrimination and sexual harassment, and a further 1,332 pounds in interest.

Nursery Worker Compensated for Council Negligence

Posted on: December 3rd, 2010

A children’s nursery worker, who suffered debilitating injuries when she was crushed under a falling metal door, has received an undisclosed compensation settlement.

Beverley Hampshire (47) from Sheffield, South Yorkshire, was eworking at Sheffield City Council’s First Start Children’s Centre as a children’s nursery officer. She was fetching play equipment for the children in her care, when the metal door of the outdoor shed in which the equipment was kept fell from its hinges and struck her.

Beverley lifted her arms to protect her head as the door fell, and sustained injuries to her wrist, forearm, shoulder and neck. Beverley was then diagnosed with a frozen shoulder and regional pain syndrome, which causes regular pain and limits normal day to day activities.

After taking legal guidance, Beverley sued Sheffield City Council for failing to provide a safe working environment and, in an out-of-court settlement, was awarded an undisclosed amount of compensation to account for her physical trauma and subsequent loss of earnings.