Dear Sir,

I read after the article regarding asbestos (read again here).

I worked at Pressed Steel from 1958 to the mid-1980s and was heavily involved in asbestos: part of our job was to replace worn brake and clutch plates on the big presses.

We were told by management that this was perfectly safe to do as they had been checked in their laboratories and the amount of asbestos involved was very small.

However when removing the old linings the fumes could be quite toxic.

We had to drill and counter-bore the new linings and fit them to the plates with copper rivets.

A few years later I think we were given two rubber masks which we were all expected to use, but whenever I used the mask it seemed to leave me with a skin problem.

Later it was decided to soak the worn plates for 24 hours in water. Later again an area was designated for the drilling and all old asbestos bagged.

Of all the people I worked with, all but one has passed away, some quite young and some with asbestos-related diseases.

I am approaching 86 so maybe I have been lucky.

Strangely, I think the other survivor and myself were the only non-smokers.

Yours faithfully

Alan Kimber

Spring Lane