BL – Was Asbestosis forseeable?

Please have a read through the information provided below and answer the question with relevant references.

Damages are not something that correspond only to now, they can be traced back in time; for example, Chandler v Cape [2011]. If a business commits tort they would be called a tortfeasor. (BPE, 2017) In this case Mr Chandler make a claim for damages against Cape plc as he perceived them as a tortfeasor. Mr Chandler discovered he was suffering from asbestosis in 2007. Mr Chandler had only worked for Cape plc in-between 24th April to 9th October 1959 and from 24th January 1961 to 9th February 1962; as can be seen he did not work there for long periods of time. When damages were in the process of being claimed, Cape plc no longer existed as a trader.

Cape plc dealt with developing Asbestos for building and production firms, and although nowadays Asbestos is widely known to be an immensely harmful and dangerous substance, in-between the 1960’s – 1980’s, Asbestos was used for production items. For a list of items, Asbestos was used in please follow this link to the HSE website (2017),

During the court case, the judges present stated that Asbestolux was produced in the Cape plc building, and that it had no sides. Therefore, dust could escape its site without any regard for the consequences. This was not a failure in day-to-day management; this was a systemic failure of which the Defendant was fully aware. (England and Wales Court of Appeal, 2013) At the time of production, Asbestos was not seen as harmful a product as it is now. Even though the business was not aware of the damages being bought to their staff at the time of production, the court found the Asbestos damages as foreseeable.

Question – Can all Asbestosis damage be perceived as foreseeable, irrespective of the era it occurred?

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