If you are wondering how long you can be exposed to asbestos before it becomes harmful, the truth is that there is no "safe" level of asbestos exposure. Asbestos can cause cancer and chronic respiratory diseases after any asbestos fibers are inhaled or ingested. Generally, these diseases take a long time to develop after exposure, with symptoms appearing anywhere between 10 to 80 years later.
Due to asbestos use in classrooms across the country, teachers are at risk for being diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases, like mesothelioma, today. Used extensively throughout the 20th century, asbestos was worked into insulation, pipe wrap, ceiling tiles, floor tiles, coatings, roof shingles and drywall in school buildings.
As we celebrate Labor Day and the workers that have made this country into what it is today, we also remember the dangers they have faced in the workplace throughout the decades. Asbestos is a microscopic, silent killer that has affected workers in many different occupations. Most of those who have been exposed to asbestos have experienced exposure in an industrial environment.
In Monday's post, we mentioned a few occupations at high risk for asbestos exposure on the job. One we did not mention that is mining. Miners face exposure at work mostly because asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral found within the earth. They can be exposed while mining for asbestos itself, or other substances underground.
In May 2015, a union leader complained about the asbestos removal process in the basement of a county-owned building. William Rutland noticed welfare workers removing asbestos without the proper protective gear, a requirement put into place by the state Labor Department's Bureau of Public Employee Safety and Health, or PESH.
It is a fact that electricians often face asbestos exposure on the job, which can lead to fatal diseases like mesothelioma and asbestosis. That is why the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) has created rules and regulations regarding the handling of the substance while on the job.
Have you been exposed to asbestos? Many victims wonder where their exposure occurred and who is responsible for their asbestos-related diseases. In the cases of those that file lawsuits or claims, knowing who is to blame for their condition is essential information that will help them attain compensation. Let's take a look at some common culprits of asbestos exposure:
Did you know that firefighters are some of those most at risk for developing the fatal cancer, mesothelioma? Although firefighters do not often handle asbestos - the only known cause of mesothelioma - they can be exposed when fighting fires in older homes containing asbestos materials and products.
If you have worked as a drywaller, you should be aware that your risk for a mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease diagnosis is high. This is because products used in applying drywall contained asbestos until 1978.