Killed by a Cuddle – Tragic Asbestos Death Story

Killed by a Cuddle – Tragic Asbestos Death Story


This tragic story about Annette Bhatti appeared across news networks across the globe in 2012. We have re-published it here as a timely reminder of the silent danger asbestos poses to so many.

As a child Annette Bhatti used to welcome her dad home from work with a cuddle each night, like millions of youngsters around the world.

Neither of them knew that the loving hug would end up killing her as his clothes were caked in asbestos picked up from the shipyards he worked in.

An inquest heard ­devastated dad Lawrence Ramplee blames himself for the death of his 49-year-old daughter, even though the dangers of the dust were not known about in those days.

Mum-of-two Annette died of mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos from birth to the age of 18 when she left home.

She also helped her mum wash Lawrence’s work clothes after he had been cutting up 10ft corrugated asbestos sheets by hand.

Recording a verdict of death due to industrial disease Coroner Keith Wiseman said: “Tragically, Mr Ramplee recalls giving his daughter a hug when he got home before he changed.

“She was exposed to dust fibres from a young age.”

Annette, of Southampton, was diagnosed with the cancer in June 2010, a month before she married long-term partner Bal Bhatti.

She lost her fight for survival last December.

Lawrence, now a pensioner, worked in shipyards from the mid-50s.

Annette’s brother Stuart said after the Southampton inquest: “He blames himself. He is broken, totally devastated.”


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