Today, the average American citizen does not know much about asbestos. Most people are aware of the fact that it can be found within the popcorn ceilings of older houses, but many wouldn’t guess that it can be found naturally outside of their homes.
Residents in Arizona are just now learning about the extensive chrysotile asbestos deposits and closed mines that have resided in Gila County in the Salt River District throughout the last century. Commercial production of asbestos began in the state in 1903, after the mineral was found in the Grand Canyon and in Central Arizona. Over 160 asbestos mines were opened and operated before the 1980s, producing at least 75,000 tons of the substance for commercial use.
Johns-Manville Co., a large asbestos manufacturer, even operated a small town for miners in Central Arizona. It was called “Chrysotile,” named after the substance, and boasted a post office and power plant. In the 1930s, the town produced asbestos that would help build the hydroelectric plant of the Hoover Dam.
You might be surprised to learn about the asbestos that has existed around you for decades. For El Dorado Hills residents in California as well as Southern Nevadans should be especially aware of the high levels of asbestos that can be found within the earth around them, but we think everyone should educate themselves on the dangers of exposure. It is often at work that a person is exposed continually over time.