Before the 1980s, asbestos was utilized in a wide range of building materials and for a variety of construction purposes. Asbestos was a popular and preferred mineral to employ in products that needed to be both fire resistant and insulated, despite the fact that it is now proven to cause cancer in humans. Since asbestos possessed all the ideal qualities, it was widely used for many years before the risks of asbestos exposure to the human body were made public.
Construction workers have one of the riskiest jobs in the country, according to OSHA. Construction workers were probably exposed to asbestos whether or not they worked directly with it, and they are at risk of contracting an asbestos-related disease.
Unfortunately, this is the reality. However, there are options for workers exposed to asbestos. For questions, contact the New York personal injury attorneys at Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law. We can help you make sense of your situation and give you further info about what steps to take.
The History of Asbestos in Construction
From the 1920s through the 1980s, asbestos was a common ingredient in a wide variety of building materials. During that time period, asbestos was used in every house, office, business facility, factory, shipyard, rail yard, and plant that was erected. Although its use was tapered out in the late 20th century, it is still present in many of these structures. Older buildings now frequently require asbestos abatement, which is an extremely risky undertaking. Yet, those who remove the asbestos are not the only ones at risk. Disturbing any asbestos can release airborne fibers that can be inhaled and lead to diseases associated with asbestos exposure.
You are thought to be at risk of developing a disease related to asbestos if you are a construction worker who is currently working on older structures or if you were a construction worker between 1920 and 1980.
How Asbestos Exposure May Have Impacted Workers
You are still at risk even if you never worked with asbestos firsthand. Whether known or unknown, substantial airborne asbestos concentrations are possible at construction sites and other related workplaces. These dangerous filaments are present at any job site that contains asbestos.
Due to the strong nature of these fibers, it is particularly severe on current restoration and demolition projects where asbestos is present. Everyone on the building site is at danger of asbestos exposure if just one person cuts, drills, sands, or otherwise comes into contact with an asbestos product.
In the building industry, second hand asbestos exposure is very common. You run the risk of exposing others close to you to the hazards of asbestos if asbestos fibers stick to your skin, hair, hat, clothes, or shoes. You may come into contact with your family, friends, and coworkers, who may also get illnesses associated with asbestos.
Types of Jobs Commonly Exposed to Asbestos
Construction work is constantly being done since there is a constant need for it. Construction workers are continuously building, renovating, and dismantling everything from homes to businesses, industrial buildings to heavy construction. The manufacturing of many items that originally included asbestos has been replaced with the use of synthetic and natural fibers.
Any number of construction jobs may have been directly exposed to asbestos or had secondary exposure to it, including:
- Drywall contractors
- Flooring installers
- Site supervisors
- Crane operators
- Demolition crews
Everyone who worked in construction in the 20th century was probably exposed to asbestos, regardless of their specific position. There are no safe amounts of asbestos exposure, however some high levels do raise the chance of mesothelioma, an asbestos-related disease.
Mesothelioma is a type of cancer that develops on the protective lining that surrounds the lungs, abdomen, testicles, or heart. Asbestos exposure is the main cause of mesothelioma.
Products & Materials Known To Contain Asbestos
There are many products and materials found on a construction site that may contain asbestos. They include:
- Materials for cabinets
- Masonry supplies and/or cement powder
- Finishing compound, joint tape, and/or drywall
- Tiles and underlayment for floors
- Exterior siding
- Adhesives, sealants, and paints
- Roofing supplies
- Protective equipment worn when welding
How Brandon J. Broderick Can Help You
Construction workers who contract asbestos-related illnesses – including lung cancer or mesothelioma – may be entitled to financial compensation for their medical expenses if they weren't informed of the risks they were taking on. Negligence on construction sites is overwhelming, and those responsible should be held accountable for putting you in danger.
The team at Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney At Law has helped countless construction workers who have been injured or suffered illness due to the negligence of their employer or other third parties in New York. We can review your case, gather evidence and help you get the compensation your case deserves.
Don't wait. After suffering an injury or illness, consulting with an attorney as soon as possible is very important. There is no risk. You can call us to schedule a no-cost consultation.