Asbestos is a naturally-occurring mineral within our earth, once coveted for its properties of insulation, heat and fire resistance, strength, and durability. In the 1970’s the dangers of exposure to asbestos in its raw form started to become public knowledge. While workers of all kinds were exposed to asbestos, miners handled the substance in its most dangerous form.
Generations of American families are at risk for deadly asbestos-related diseases like mesothelioma and asbestosis as the result of asbestos mining.
Not only did miners come into direct contact with asbestos fibers in their natural state, they brought them home with them on their clothing, skin, and hair, exposing family members with every hug, laundry load, and car ride. Many miners and mining communities have been devastated by asbestos-related diseases after spending decades on the job.
Not only are asbestos miners and their families at risk for asbestos exposure, those that mined talc and other minerals risk coming into contact with the dangerous substance underground. This is because asbestos is found in many of the same geographical locations as talc and other minerals. Talc products have been known to contain different amounts of asbestos over the years.
If you are a miner, alert your doctor to the possibility of a future diagnosis today. Asbestos-related diseases can have latency periods of up to 70 years, making treatment difficult once symptoms arise. Contacting an experienced asbestos attorney might be your next step.
Find out more about miners and asbestos exposure on our Mining page.