Rail workers are high risk for asbestos related illnesses

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Many British rail workers have been diagnosed with asbestos related illnesses such as mesothelioma, asbestosis, pleural plaques and pleural thickening through the course of their employment in the locomotive industry.

Workers often recall large particles of asbestos dust in the air on a regular basis whilst going about their daily duties. Some workers even remember making beds out of asbestos so they could have a nap during break times.

One of our clients used to strip down engines and described an asbestos mattress that separated the inner skin from the outer skin of the engine. He remembers when the asbestos was removed during servicing or refurbishment the air would be white with dust and he was often covered from head to toe.

Other clients stripped down carriages, which were all lined with asbestos and many describe a snowstorm effect of asbestos dust and fibres during this process.

By inhaling these deadly fibres workers put themselves at high risk of developing an asbestos related cancer or disease. Mesothelioma is a cancer of the lining of the lungs and is nearly always associated with exposure to asbestos. Sadly due to the long lag time between exposure and symptoms (eg 20-50 years) it has a high fatality rate.

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