Asbestos Exposure did not Cause Colon Cancer: Ontario WSIAT

A mining worker’s exposure to asbestos did not cause his colon cancer, the Ontario Workplace Safety and Insurance Appeals Tribunal has held.

The worker worked for a “nickel producer” for approximately 38 years from 1959 to 1997, first in a mill, then in a smelter, and then in maintenance and construction.  Less than 3 years after he retired, he was diagnosed with colon cancer.

The WSIAT found that although the worker had been exposed to asbestos, the exposure was not of a “continuous and repetitive nature” or a “major component” of his work.

The WSIAT also accepted the evidence of a specialist in occupational medicine that the medical literature overwhelmingly supports the statement that colon cancer is not related to asbestos exposure, and that there was no evidence of a relationship between the worker’s exposure and his colon cancer.

2012 ONWSIAT 4:


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Adrian Miedema

About Adrian Miedema

Adrian is a partner in the Toronto Employment group of Dentons Canada LLP. He advises and represents public- and private-sector employers in employment, health and safety and human rights matters. He appears before employment tribunals and all levels of the Ontario courts on behalf of employers. He also advises employers on strategic and risk management considerations in employment policy and contracts.

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