When asbestos was first installed in the countless buildings in the United States it was very dangerous to the workers who were at the mines unearthing the material. It was also very dangerous to the workers who were employed at the factories processing the material into construction products. Then it was transported to millions of job sites across the country, where it was dangerous to the workers who were on the job.
As if this was not bad enough, it was dangerous to the families of the workers. When a worker came home at the end of the day still covered in the deadly asbestos fibers, they posed a significant risk to the spouses and children of these workers who would hug them at the end of the day and lived in the same home.As our Boston asbestos attorneys can explain, these cases where a worker would take asbestos home on his or her clothes and boots, aptly named take-home asbestos cases, are responsible for victims who are younger than average to become diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma. The reason asbestos normally is seen in older victims is because it typically takes between 20 and 50 years for them to become sick to the point where the cancer is advanced enough for them to have noticeable symptoms.
Once they have noticeable symptoms and go to a doctor, they are often told they have less than a year to live. Even with treatment, they may have only two or three years left to live, but with treatment, they will be very painful years. With take-home asbestos cases, the children were exposed a young age and become noticeably sick at a much younger age. These cases are particularly tragic.
Even though asbestos is not used very much anymore, it is still deadly when a building is being renovated or demolished, and, therefore, the work must be done by a certified asbestos abatement professional. This professional must first draft an abatement plan and then share that plan with the state health department. The workers must be in proper protective clothing and be given ventilators or respirators. The area must be covered with sheeting material, and HEPA filters must be used to prevent the fibers from escaping.
Once the fibers are collected, they must be kept wet to prevent dust form escaping, and they must be transported in approved containers to a hazardous waste collection facility. This not only must be done in every case, but the contractor must also keep detailed records.
According to a recent news release from the Attorney General for the State of Washington, one contractor was illegally disposing of the asbestos to avoid inspections and save money. Then to cover his tracks, the owner forged signatures and disposal paperwork that claimed the asbestos material was properly disposed of. The likely reason that someone would do this is to save money, as proper asbestos disposal is not cheap. It should be noted that these are merely accusations and contractor has not been found liable or admitted to any negligent or criminal activity.
If you or a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma in Boston, call for a free and confidential appointment at 1-888-367-2900.
AG Ferguson accuses asbestos contractor of falsifying disposal documents, December 29, 2016, Washington State AG
More Blog Entries:
New Effort to Strengthen Asbestos Litigation, June 28, 2016, Boston Mesothelioma Lawyer Blog