It is predicted that hundreds of former members of the Irish Naval Service are going to sue the State for substantial damages as a result of being exposed to toxic asbestos.
Asbestos had previously been detected in engine exhausts and manifold lagging on the naval ships LE Aoife, LE Emer, LE Aisling, LE Orla and the now decommissioned LE Deirdre. Speaking about the potential of lawsuits against the State Liam Moloney, personal Injury Solicitor who’s firm in Naas are representing former Navy Veterans who believe they have been exposed to the hazardous substance said today “during much of the last century asbestos was used as an insulator and fire proofing material in construction materials and fabrics. Inhaling asbestos caused serious and sometimes fatal health problems including pleural disease, asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma”.
He continued “it is important for Veterans to understand how exposure happened during their service and what they can do about it now. If a Navy Veteran was at risk of exposure symptoms can take decades to surface and typically won’t arise until a disease has progressed to an advanced stage”
Mr Moloney continued “it is essential that the Irish Naval Service put in place a protocol for all serving and past Naval Staff and their Families to be screened for asbestos related diseases. The Naval Service should also agree to pay for the costs of these examination and tests. Family members have also become ill from asbestos exposure from washing the clothes of family members.”