Government bodies, such as local authorities, have a legal duty to ensure the quality of the air we breathe meets legal minimum standards. It has been widely reported that air pollution levels in our cities are cause for concern and this was highlighted in the recent High Court decision to allow a second inquest into the cause of Ella Kissi-Debrah's death in 2013.
Ella suffered from asthma and died following a severe asthma attack (her 28th in three years). She lived near the South Circular in southeast London, an area of persistently high levels of nitrogen dioxide and particulate pollution. A report compiled by a consultant respiratory physician after Ella’s death and subsequent inquest has linked her repeated hospital admissions and death with exposure to "unlawful levels of air pollution".
In light of this new evidence, the High Court granted the application for a new inquest, which may find that the Government's failure to address air pollution was directly responsible for Ella's death; depriving Ella of her basic human right to life. This would force the Government to take effective action to actively reduce the contamination in the air we breathe to lawful levels.
If you or your family have suffered injury or loss as a result of unlawful levels of air pollution this means you may be entitled to representation and compensation.
If you would like to discuss your circumstances on a free no obligation basis please speak to one of our solicitors. We can be contacted on 0800 731 8539 or email us.