Former smoker gets benefits for cancer

Occupational asbestos exposure a factor in Ontario appeals tribunal’s decision
By Jeffrey Smith
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 03/06/2017

An appeals tribunal has overturned a previous denial of workers’ compensation benefits for a worker who developed lung cancer after years of exposure to asbestos at work.

The worker worked in an electrical motor shop from 1976 to 1982, where he took motors apart and handed them to electricians for building or repair. The motors used asbestos as insulation inside and the worker used asbestos cloths to put around the ends of wires in larger motors. He then worked as a butcher in meat shops from 1982 to 1984 before joining an automobile manufacturer as a tool setter in the company’s brake assembly shop. He worked in that shop until 1999.

The worker’s job in the automobile plant was located about 15 feet from the brake bounding assembly line — where asbestos brake linings were ground, drilled and riveted leading to airborne asbestos. For a 10-month period in 1984, he worked on the brake line.