Most people know that exposure to different types of asbestos can be very damaging to your health. Asbestos can cause fatal medical conditions including mesothelioma and various forms of cancer. It is also responsible for the development of a range of other medical conditions including pleural thickening and the less serious pleural plaques. The idea of exposure to asbestos might conjure up visions of work in various forms of industry including shipbuilding, the lagging of pipes and the use of asbestos in making certain types of roofing.
It’s certainly true that people who worked in various branches of industry were exposed to asbestos but you might be surprised to learn that asbestos is still found in some unexpected and worrying places, for example, in schools.
Various studies have highlighted the use of asbestos in the creation of building materials used to construct schools. The Department for Education accepted that about 90% of all schools built from 1945 – the mid 1970s, still contain some quantity of asbestos. It also accepted that about 83% of all schools regardless of age, still contain asbestos materials.
Asbestos is not only found in the materials used in the construction of the buildings themselves. Asbestos materials were once used in a school laboratory setting because of its fire-retardant qualities. Asbestos is also a very durable material.
Thankfully, the chances of exposure to asbestos whilst in schools, on a scale sufficient enough to cause illness is small but it has still happened.
There have been cases where teachers and even some pupils in schools were unknowingly exposed to asbestos and later became ill.
Many people exposed to asbestos do not develop any form of illness for many years. In some cases, they are not diagnosed with an asbestos-related illness for decades after the exposure took place.
If you develop an illness caused by asbestos, as soon as the diagnosis has been confirmed by doctors, you should take legal advice without delay and find out whether you are entitled to make a compensation claim. It is important to take prompt advice as there are strict time limits for making compensation claims once your diagnosis becomes known. We can advise you.