Just a few decades ago, marketers touted asbestos as the “greatest fire-proofing material ever used.” The public viewed as the perfect thermal insulating material. Seemingly everything contained asbestos, from construction projects to clothing, and from automotive parts to plumbing systems. Today, we are now aware that inhaling asbestos fibers can cause mesothelioma, a fatal cancer.
The United States began banning certain asbestos products as early as 1970. However, a full ban of asbestos was rejected in 1991. Some forms of asbestos are still permitted. These are four common sources of asbestos exposure that Americans come in contact with today:
1. Old Buildings
In the mid-20th century, asbestos was commonly used in insulation and other building materials. Many of these buildings are still standing, including historic homes, long-standing institutions, and schools. Before the public was made aware of the material’s dangers, asbestos was used because of its malleability and its effectiveness as a flame retardant. Abandoned, condemned, or poorly maintained buildings may harbor higher levels of asbestos due to decaying walls, tiles, and insulation.
2. Demolition/Construction Sites
Damaged or decaying buildings built with asbestos insulation materials have the potential to release a multitude of toxins. An infamous case of this type of exposure was seen following the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001. When several buildings in downtown New York City collapsed, dangerous items were sent airborne into the lungs of hundreds of citizens.
3. Imported Products
Imported products such as makeup, toys, and even crayons have been found to carry some degree of asbestos. On Monday, June 10th of this year, Dance Moms breakout star JoJo Siwa’s new makeup kit for tweens was recalled by popular accessory store Claire’s because it tested positive for asbestos.
4. Talcum Powder
Talc, a natural, soft mineral, may have some connections to cancers if inhaled. Some talc has been mined in the same place as asbestos and can contain traces of it due to natural causes. While most talc-based products shouldn’t contain asbestos, these products may contain other hazardous chemicals that can take a toll on the body with extended use. Multiple lawsuits have been filed against Johnson & Johnson over cancer they’ve allegedly developed from longtime use of talc powder products.
Have you or a loved one been diagnosed with mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure?
If you or a loved one were diagnosed with mesothelioma, you may be able to file a lawsuit. Contact our skilled personal injury attorneys for a free, confidential consultation to find out if you have a claim.