Asbestos is a worldwide problem, resulting annually in nearly 110,00 deaths and more than 1.5 million disability-adjusted life years across the globe.
As the World Health Organization reports, around 125 million people worldwide are still exposed to asbestos in the workplace. Asbestos is also a big problem among home renovators who may not be aware of the tremendous risk they are taking with their life.
A Boston mesothelioma lawyer knows many people simply are not informed about the dangers of asbestos or don’t think the warnings apply to them. Public education is necessary to help renovators, employers and workers understand the full extent of the risks that they take when they work in an environment that may have asbestos without the proper precautions.
National Asbestos Awareness Day Draws Attention to Risks
According to Info Link, November 28 is National Asbestos Awareness Day in Australia. The purpose of the day is for groups throughout the country to come together to remember and pay tribute to those who died from asbestos-related medical conditions. All of the different types of asbestos can cause serious health problems, including lung cancer, mesothelioma, cancer of the ovaries, cancer of the larynx, and asbestosis.
National Asbestos Awareness Day is also intended to make sure people are aware of the continuing dangers of asbestos. In Australia, as many as one in three homes has asbestos in it. In the United States, the majority of homes built before 1980 have some type of asbestos products in them. Asbestos can be found in floors, insulation, ceiling tiles, popcorn ceilings, roofing shingles and a whole host of other common products in houses. Unfortunately, homeowners may not know their house has asbestos in it or may not understand that when they do home improvement projects, they put themselves at significant risk of inhaling the asbestos fibers, which are dangerous when disturbed.
Asbestos exposure can occur any time asbestos-containing products are subject to degradation through demolition or renovation. This generally means if you leave the asbestos in your home or environment alone, there is minimal risk. However, as your home ages and the asbestos products break down, the asbestos fibers may get into the air. Same thing when you initiate renovation projects. When you breath the fibers in, they can lodge in your lungs, causing scarring and leading to the development of disease.
Australia is not the only country with a National Asbestos Awareness Day. The United States has also undertaken awareness efforts to try to educate the public. Still, with Australia’s awareness day coming up, now is a good time for homeowners, employers and workers to consider there potential risk. A study in one medical journal found as many as 60 percent of DIY renovators said they were exposed to asbestos dust during home renovations. A total of 53 percent said their partner was also exposed, and 40 percent said their kids may have breathed in asbestos fibers.
Don’t become one of the many who is exposed. Be sure to take appropriate safety precautions if you are dealing with asbestos products.
If you are exposed to mesothelioma in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.
More Blog Entries
Australian Court Awards Highest Verdict for Asbestos Exposure Case in Nation’s History, Aug. 31, 2014, Boston Mesothelioma Lawyer Blog