Family of docker who died of asbestos-linked cancer settles case for €42,000

26 April 2019

The family of a Dublin docker who died seven years ago from cancer later found to be linked to asbestos dust has settled its High Court action for €42,000.

Martin Kelty (68), a father of five and a grandfather of 12 died six to eight months after the cancer was diagnosed.

John Nolan BL told the High Court today Mr Kelty had worked on Dublin docks from 1964 until his retirement in 1977. After his death in 2012, the state pathologist, Counsel at an inquest into his death noted the type of cancer Mr Kelty had was the type of disease linked to those who had been exposed to asbestos.

Mr Kelty’s daughter Emily Kelty, Cloonmore Gardens, Jobstown, Dublin had sued Burke Shipping Group, Ocean Pier, Alexandra Road Dublin and the Dublin Port company, Alexandria Road, Dublin.

Martin Kelty was a docker who started working in 1964 in the docks unloading cargo from vessels with a crane or by the use of ships derricks.

Cargoes were carried loosely in the holds of vessels and not in containers and this it was claimed was particularly so in respect of asbestos which came in bags.

The dust from the asbestos it was claimed was ingested by Mr Kelty who was unloading the vessels as it was claimed no safety equipment was provided.

It was claimed there was an alleged failure to acknowledge the dangers of asbestos and an alleged failure to assign a special berth for the docking of vessels carrying such cargoes. There was also it was claimed an alleged failure to warn Mr Kelty of the dangers of asbestos.

The claims were denied.

Counsel John Nolan told the court it was only at the inquest into Mr Kelty’s death in August 2013 that his family heard evidence from the State pathologist the cancer was linked to exposure to asbestos.

Mr Justice Kevin Cross approved the settlement.

Source: Irish Examiner

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