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Wife dies after washing asbestos covered overalls

A devoted wife and mother from Cirencester died after washing her husband’s overalls which were covered with asbestos. Yvonne Moaby had to wash the overalls by hand because between 1962-72 she had no washing machine and she had to shake the overalls first on the front porch to get rid of the white powdery dust they were covered in.

At the time, her husband, John, of Quenington, near Cirencester, was working for the Southern Electricity Generating Board in Gosditch Street where his job was to repair storage heaters and dispose of old ones. Mr Moaby had to strip out asbestos blankets from the heaters before they were taken to the tip.

His solicitor, Brigitte Chandler of Swindon law firm, Charles Lucas & Marshall, was able to prove that even though Mrs Moaby never worked directly with asbestos, her death was caused by washing her husband’s overalls and the lack of protective clothing given to him by his employers.

Ms Chandler, who has acted for hundreds of asbestos-related cancer claimants across the country, secured a £50,000 interim payment for Mrs Moaby during her lifetime and a total payment of damages of £187,500 to Mr Moaby.

Ms Chandler was one of the first lawyers to successfully bring a claim on behalf of a wife who developed mesothelioma, an asbestos related cancer, through washing their husband’s work clothes. Sadly, cases like this have become more and more common.

R B Asbestos Consultants provide asbestos services throughout the UK.