According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 1.3 million people in the U.S. work every day in an environment where they are regularly exposed to large amounts of asbestos.
For many years now asbestos (a known carcinogen) has been linked to the development of serious health problems, including lung cancer, colorectal and gastrointestinal cancer and mesothelioma. As such, OSHA, along with other workplace safety agencies, carefully monitor and regulate exposure to asbestos in the workplace. Regulations mandate that employers limit employees' risks for developing health problems as a result of exposure to significant levels of asbestos.
Because of these regulations, if you work in an industry where exposure to large levels of asbestos is common, you may be entitled to training, proper ventilation in the workplace, monitoring, protective clothing and equipment, showers and post exposure precautions, and medical examinations (all provided by your employer) in an effort to reduce and limit any risk of developing any health issues as a result your exposure to asbestos.
For decades now, industries have taken measures to reduce the use of asbestos in response to the link between the carcinogen and serious health related problems. Yet because of its inherent durability, it remains a commonly used product in many industries. Industries where workers still encounter asbestos in substantial amounts include:
- construction, renovation, and demolition
- heating and cooling equipment repair
- automotive repair
- some manufacturing
- roofing, and
- janitorial jobs in buildings with deteriorating asbestos
This is just a small list of the many industries where asbestos exposure is still commonplace.
Determining if exposure to asbestos has caused health problems you may be suffering is not exactly cut and dry. If you have worked in an industry where you may have had exposure to significant amounts of asbestos, symptoms may not appear for years. You should contact an experienced personal injury attorney to discover what options you may pursue. Those options may include health monitoring even if you have no symptoms at present.
In personal injury lawsuits involving asbestos exposure, claims are typically filed against the manufacturer of the asbestos or any protective equipment that failed to protect you from exposure; owners of the property where work was being done; and/or contractors and subcontractors who where involved in the work in question.
The practiced personal injury attorneys of Panio Law Offices have a great deal of experience filing personal injury claims on behalf of employees injured in the workplace. We understand the issues that determine liability, the rights of workers who suffer (or have suffered) exposure, and the kinds of damages you are entitled to in these cases.
If you have more questions about workplace asbestos exposure or other workplace injury issues, call (312) 313-0305. We can help.