About Careers Internship MedBlog Contact us

Britons Win Legal Fight Over 'Toxic Soup' Deformities

by VR Sreeraman on July 30, 2009 at 5:00 PM
Font : A-A+

 Britons Win Legal Fight Over 'Toxic Soup' Deformities

A group of young people in Britain who claimed their birth defects were caused by a "soup of toxic materials" in a former steel town won a legal action against the local authority on Wednesday.

The 18 claimants, aged nine to 22, said the defects were caused by their mothers' exposure to pollution in Corby, a former steel town in east central England.


Corby Borough Council (CBC), which was responsible for the reclamation of a former British Steel plant, one of the largest in western Europe, was found liable at London's High Court.

The council denied it was negligent during the works at the former British Steel plant between 1985 and 1999, and that there was a link between the removal of waste to a quarry and deformities affecting hands and feet.

Judge Robert Akenhead said Wednesday there was a "statistically significant" cluster of birth defects between 1989 and 1999, and the type of contaminants which could cause the birth defects were present on the site.

"There was an extended period between 1983 and August 1997 in which Corby Borough Council was extensively negligent in its control and management of the sites," he said.

"That negligence and, as from April 1, 1992, breach of statutory duty on the part of CBC permitted and led to the extensive dispersal of contaminated mud and dust over public areas of Corby and into and over private homes, with the result that the contaminants could realistically have caused the types of birth defects of which complaint has been made by the claimants.

Corby Borough Council chief executive Chris Mallender said: "We are obviously very disappointed and very surprised at the outcome of this trial."

The steelworks closed in 1980 with the loss of 10,000 jobs.

Council leader Pat Fawcett said: "There were mistakes at that time and we can understand why mistakes were made.

"British Steel closed and there were God knows how many unemployed in Corby, and it was trying to get industry into the town and things were done quickly -- maybe more quickly than they should have been done.

"But I think people were acting in the best interests of the town at the time."

Source: AFP


Latest Environmental Health

Unprecedented Impact of High Greenhouse Emissions
The decrease in the continuing carbon budget is attributed to continued emissions since 2020.
Beating Plastic Pollution: A Mind-Set for a Greener Future
Plastic pollution: Indus river carries the second highest amount of plastic debris to the sea.
Union Minister's Wake-Up Call: The Lingering Peril of Pandemics
Enhancing the One Health-based surveillance system, Union Minister Bharati Pravin Pawar highlights the continuous peril of pandemics.
Unprecedented Insights: Illuminating Primate Evolution, Human Health, and Biodiversity
Researchers have conducted extensive studies on primate genomes, providing crucial findings on evolution, human disease, and biodiversity conservation.
Crossing the Line: Humanity's Perilous Journey on Earth
Study highlights that humanity has surpassed seven out of the nine designated "safe limits" indispensable for upholding life on Earth.
View All
This site uses cookies to deliver our services.By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use  Ok, Got it. Close

Britons Win Legal Fight Over 'Toxic Soup' Deformities Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests