Asbestos exposure could come from common household products

With all that is currently understood about the toxic substance asbestos, most people in Ohio likely expect that industry regulations would not allow for it to infiltrate mainstream products. In reality, asbestos continues to exist in even common products, many of which are present in family households across the United States. Unfortunately, illness from asbestos exposure could be sparked by some of these products.

Talc is a favorite choice for any number of products and purposes. As the softest mineral known to mankind, it is a popular choice for cosmetics, food additives, capsule fillers and even baby powder. For such a widely used product, consumers should be able to trust that it is both effective and safe to use. However, testing has shown that talc is commonly contaminated with asbestos.

This is far from a new problem, with testing from as far back as the 1970s showing that asbestos existed in certain Colgate products. More recent testing confirmed these results. Colgate denied the claims at the time and said that the results were misinterpreted, suggesting that any incidental exposure was likely harmless to consumers. When testing at multiple talc mines that supplied talc to Colgate tested positive for asbestos, the company was ordered to pay a settlement of $12.4 million to a woman who had filed an asbestos exposure lawsuit against the company. Before the question of punitive damages was considered by the jury, a settlement was reached with the woman; the terms were kept confidential.

Even minimal asbestos exposure can ultimately be deadly, and companies that supply products to consumers should be vigilant in keeping this toxic substance out of products. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for companies to deny allegations that they supplied dangerous products to their customers. While this can be disconcerting to people in Ohio who have been adversely affected by asbestos, a properly managed civil suit can be successful at garnering necessary legal recourse related to asbestos-caused injuries.

Source: salon.com, "The hard truth about the softest mineral: Talc is littered with stray asbestos", Myron Levin, Sept. 13, 2015

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