Workplace Asbestos Exposure: Asbestos Product Manufacturing Sites
Workers at asbestos product manufacturing sites are at an increased risk for being exposed to asbestos. Before the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) prohibited asbestos product manufacturing sites from creating new asbestos containing products in the 1980s, it is estimated that over 5,000 different commercial and consumer products were created at asbestos product manufacturing sites. In fact, during the 20th century, asbestos product manufacturing sites handled over 30 million tons of asbestos.
Why Product Manufacturing Sites Used Asbestos
Asbestos, a naturally occurring fibrous mineral, is inexpensive and easily accessible. Additionally, asbestos is flexible, durable, and virtually indestructible. These characteristics made asbestos ideal for insulating and protecting pipes, ovens, and buildings, among other things.
Some of the products made at asbestos product manufacturing sites include:
- building materials
- textile and cloth products
- household items
- ceiling tiles
Why are Asbestos Product Manufacturing Sites Dangerous?
Asbestos is dangerous when its fibers are inhaled or ingested. When asbestos fibers are inhaled or ingested, they remain lodged in the body and can cause severe and fatal diseases, such as:
- mesothelioma (a rare cancer that affects the lining surrounding many of the body’s internal organs)
- asbestosis (a respiratory disease caused by lung tissue scarring)
- lung cancer
- esophageal, stomach, colon, or rectum cancer
Workers at asbestos product manufacturing sites continuously handled asbestos without wearing protective clothing or respiratory equipment. Additionally, poor ventilation at asbestos product manufacturing sites increased the risk of workplace asbestos exposure and inhalation. Because of the long latency period associated with asbestos-related diseases, illnesses caused by asbestos exposure at product manufacturing sites may develop up to 40 years after initial exposure. Therefore, former asbestos product manufacturing site workers who were exposed to asbestos decades ago may now become ill.
Injured Working at an Asbestos Product Manufacturing Site?
If you or a loved one has been injured by asbestos exposure that occurred while working at an asbestos product manufacturing site, please contact us today as you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.