How Do You Know if You Have Been Exposed to Asbestos
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that was widely used in construction materials in the 20th century due to its unique properties. It is a fibrous mineral that is heat resistant, durable, and fireproof, making it an ideal material for use in insulation, roofing, flooring, and other building materials. Asbestos became popular in the 19th century due to its heat-resistant properties and its ability to withstand high temperatures without breaking down. This made it an ideal material for use in insulation, which was used in buildings to keep them warm in the winter and cool in the summer.Medical Discoveries: Asbestosis and Mesothelioma
In the early 20th century, reports began to emerge of people suffering from lung problems after exposure to asbestos. In the 1920s and 1930s, the first studies linking asbestos exposure to lung diseases such as asbestosis and mesothelioma were published. Asbestosis is a condition in which the lung tissue becomes scarred, leading to breathing difficulties and other respiratory problems. Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, heart, or abdomen and is caused by exposure to asbestos fibers.National Regulation of Asbestos Use
As more studies were conducted on the dangers of asbestos, it became clear that exposure to the mineral could have serious health consequences. In the 1960s and 1970s, the use of asbestos in construction materials began to decline as the dangers of the mineral became more widely known. In the 1980s, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began to regulate the use of asbestos in construction materials, and in 1989, the EPA banned the use of asbestos in many types of construction materials.Who Is at Risk Today?
Despite the ban on asbestos in construction materials, the mineral can still be found in many older buildings. Asbestos fibers can become airborne when building materials containing the mineral are disturbed, such as during construction or demolition work, which can lead to exposure for workers and others in the area. As a result, workers who were employed in the construction and demolition industries during the time when asbestos was widely used in construction materials are at an increased risk of developing lung diseases, such as asbestosis or mesothelioma, as a result of their exposure to the mineral.
In addition to workers in the construction and demolition industries, other individuals may also be at risk of exposure to asbestos. For example, those who live in homes or work in buildings that were built before the ban on asbestos in construction materials may be at risk of exposure to the mineral. Additionally, individuals who live near asbestos mines or waste sites may also be at risk of exposure to the mineral.Mesothelioma Liability and Judgments
The dangers of asbestos have led to many lawsuits and personal injury judgments related to exposure to the mineral. In some cases, workers who have been exposed to asbestos on the job have filed lawsuits against their employers, alleging that their employers failed to take adequate measures to protect them from exposure to the mineral. One of the most famous cases involving asbestos is the case of W.R. Grace & Co. v. Zonolite Insulation Company. In this case, W.R. Grace & Co. was found to have covered up the dangers of asbestos in its insulation products and was sued by individuals who had been exposed to the mineral in the workplace or in their homes. W.R. Grace & Co. was found guilty of conspiring to conceal the dangers of asbestos from the public and was ordered to pay millions of dollars in damages to the individuals and their families who had been affected by exposure to the mineral.Contact a Mesothelioma Attorney Right Away
Unfortunately, corporate greed is still being placed above the health of safety of employees and their families. Countless people continue to suffer because of the failure of organizations to protect them from exposure to asbestos. If you have been exposed to asbestos, contact the Throneberry Law Group. We are a nationwide law group specializing in getting compensation for victims of asbestos exposure. We are a team of knowledge, experience, and result-orientated attorneys, dedicated to holding corporations that put profits over health accountable for the harm they have caused. Call us now for a free consultation.