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Home | Asbestos Products | Case Studies | Household & Bystander Exposure | Childhood

Childhood exposure to asbestos dust

Children love to play with scraps of building materials, help their parents as they work around the house and hug their parents as they get home from work. Some children were exposed to asbestos during such ordinary activities and years later developed asbestos disease.

Belinda Dunn

Belinda Dunn was 30 and had just given birth to her first child when she was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 1997. She could not recall having had any exposure to asbestos. Her father recalled an old fibro carport that he had pulled down at the family house in the early 1970′s when Belinda was a young girl.

A family friend recalled seeing Belinda playing on the pile of broken and dusty fibro sheets singing, “I’m the king of the castle“. Turner Freeman commenced proceedings against James Hardie, the manufacturer of the sheets Belinda played on.

James Hardie argued that Belinda’s exposure was too short to cause mesothelioma. Her case settled after medical evidence was led to the effect that there is no safe level of exposure to asbestos dust and fibre.

Melissa Haylock

Melissa Haylock was 41 and the mother of triplets when she was diagnosed with mesothelioma. In the mid 1960′s, when Melissa was a baby, her father carried out renovations using fibro on the house and shops where the family were living, inadvertently exposing Melissa to asbestos from his clothes and from being present when the renovation work was done.

Melissa instructed Turner Freeman lawyers who brought proceedings in the District Court of South Australia. When it settled, she became the first South Australian to receive damages for the cost of care that she would have provided to her children but for her condition of mesothelioma.

Anna Rooney

Anna Rooney was 48 when she was diagnosed with mesothelioma. In the late 1950′s she had lived with her family adjacent to the Wangi Wangi Power Station in New South Wales.

Anna’s father was a boilermaker employed on the construction of the power station. Each day he came home for lunch, picking up and playing with his baby daughter.

Friends of the family recalled the imprint of Anna’s lips from the kisses she gave her father on his cheek outlined in the white dust that covered him.

That dust was asbestos dust from the work he did at the power station. Turner Freeman acted for Anna in a claim against her father’s employer and the Electricity Commission. The claim settled prior to trial for a confidential sum.

Turner Freeman has acted for numerous victims who have been exposed to asbestos as children. Often they have no recollection of where they were exposed to asbestos, it having occurred when they were young children. Turner Freeman’s lawyers have extensive experience in locating witnesses and identifying childhood exposures.

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