BBC Investigation into M&S Asbestos "Shocking - but not Surprising"
LONDON, February 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --
A BBC investigation has claimed that high street giant Marks & Spencer was warned that its customers and staff may have been put at risk from asbestos contamination more than 10 years before being fined £1m for breaching asbestos removal rules.
In the "Inside Out" programme, screened on Monday 11 February, one contractor told a BBC journalist that he had raised the alarm over the way asbestos was being removed during a London store refurbishment in 1998, more than a decade before the company was fined £1m over work carried out at its Reading store.
Bridget Collier, head of the Industrial disease department at Fentons Personal Injury Solicitors LLP, said the report, whilst shocking, is not entirely surprising.
"We have heard several reports of maintenance workers carrying out refits and refurbishments for retailers - not just M&S - and having their warnings about asbestos being completely ignored," said Bridget, a partner with the firm.
"While the majority of any exposure risk during such refurbishments is borne by those carrying out the work, it is obviously of great concern if asbestos is being disturbed or broken up to cause fibres to circulate in areas where workers and even customers might be exposed.
"We have represented a number of clients who have developed asbestos-related diseases such as mesothelioma and other lung conditions, who have never worked in the industry sectors where one might expect them to have been exposed to asbestos," she said. "In these instances, we have later found that they were exposed whilst their work premises - be it a shop floor, warehouse or even a hospital wing - were undergoing major renovations and the correct, safe asbestos-handling procedures were simply not being followed.
"Furthermore, it appears from the evidence we have gathered in a number of our cases that this lackadaisical approach to the rules has been endemic for many, many years," said Bridget. "Workers regularly tell us that they were not provided with proper safety equipment and that their managers, bosses or employers would constantly and consistently ignore any issues they raised about the safe removal and disposal of asbestos in order to ensure the job was finished as quickly as possible."
How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims for victims of industrial diseases including asbestos-related illnesses such as mesothelioma, asbestosis and lung cancer.
If you think that you have a case or require further information contact Fentons on 0800-0191-297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire
More by this Source
Lorry Driver Injured in Fatal Collision Left with PTSD
14 Jun, 2013, 20:26 BST
Motorcyclist in £3 Million Settlement After Collision Leads to Double Amputation
11 Jun, 2013, 14:05 BST
"No Excuse" for Weekend Increase in Surgery Death Rates
31 May, 2013, 09:54 BST
Journalists and Bloggers
Visit PR Newswire for Journalists for releases, photos and customised feeds just for Media.
View and download archived video content distributed by MultiVu on The Digital Center.
Until you hear the full story, why would you invest?
Making sound investment decisions can be difficult. You can study the figures and read the analyst recommendations, but how do you really know the story behind company strategy? How can you get answers to your questions?
The Private Investor Network helps you to reach an informed decision on the stocks you pick. Interactive presentations from UK listed companies give you the kind of access previously enjoyed only by the big fund managers. And with keynote speeches from industry experts, downloadable content and an investor lounge where you can swap tips with your peers, you can invest with confidence.
For more information, and to register for FREE, visit us at www.privateinvestornetwork.co.uk
Get content for your website
Enhance your website's or blog's content with PR Newswire's customised real-time news feeds.
Contact PR Newswire
Send us an email at MarketingUK@prnewswire.co.uk or call us at +44 (0)20 7454 5382
Become a PR Newswire client
Request more information about PR Newswire products & services or call us at +44 (0)20 7454 5382