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Court allows widow of Bangladeshi ship-breaking worker to sue UK firm

A Bangladeshi woman whose husband lost his life while dismantling an oil tanker at a ship-breaking yard in 2018, can file a negligence claim against a British company involved in the vessel’s sale, according to London’s High Court.

The worker died while working on a tanker called the EKTA in the port city of Chattogram. British lawyers representing his widow, arguing that Maran (UK) Ltd was responsible for the ship ending up in Bangladesh, where working conditions are dangerous.

The ship, according to details from the judgement, had been owned and managed by companies belonging to the Angelicoussis Shipping Group, which included Maran (UK) Limited.

As Reuters reports, Bangladesh is one of the most popular destinations for breaking end-of-life ships. However, at least 24 ship-breaking workers were killed last year and another 34 were seriously injured at the scrap yards.

What is more, several companies sell ships to scrap dealers, who pay the highest price for ships and are closely linked to beach yards where unsafe working practices are common, Shipbreaking Platform informs.

Commenting on the latestWidow of Bangladeshi ship-breaking worker free to sue UK-based firm

ruling, Oliver Holland, a partner at the Leigh Day law firm representing Begum, said that that trend could change if Maran (UK) is made to accept that it owed Begum’s husband a duty of care.