Asbestos deaths across the North East reach record high

The number of workers from the North East of England and Cumbria who die from asbestos related illnesses has reached the highest levels on record.
The Health and Safety Executive has revealed that 400 people die from the illnesses each year in the region.
It comes as the new Northern Asbestos Support and Campaign Group is launched for victims living in the North East.
The North’s industrial past means it has one of the highest rates of death from mesothelioma.
The support group, set up by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) and the first of its kind in the region, offers services including telephone helpline and drop-in centres.
Victims will also be offered home visits, advice on benefit entitlements and family members will be offered support at inquests.
‘Devastating impact’
Chair of the group Michael Blench, from Wallsend, North Tyneside, said: “As a former shipyard worker I have known many workmates die from asbestos diseases like mesothelioma.
“I am well aware of the devastating impact asbestos has had on families across the region.”
Asbestos is the biggest single work-related cause of death in the UK.