Cancer dangers for mechanics who work with vehicle brakes

On Behalf of | Aug 8, 2023 | Asbestos Exposure & Claims

Asbestos was once a popularly used mineral in everyday goods and building materials because of its extreme resistance to heat. Over the last few decades, companies have avoided using asbestos because of its cancer-causing compounds

However, today, many people are still victims of asbestos exposure despite the precautions. One such victim was a motor vehicle mechanic who was exposed to asbestos when working on brakes. How can mechanics be exposed to asbestos? Here’s what you should know:

Asbestos used in brakes

During the early 1970s, Thomas Sorrentino worked as a vehicle mechanic for United Volkswagen. Sorrentino reported that he was responsible for grinding brakes to fit in drums, and then using a compressor to blow the dust off the brake drum. Asbestos was once commonly used as a friction material and allowed the distribution of heat during the braking process. As a result, the asbestos ground off the brakes contaminated the air and entered the mechanic’s lungs, leading to mesothelioma. 

Mesothelioma is an aggressive form of lung cancer. It’s the result of asbestos entering the body, lining internal organs and causing damage to cells. Eventually, the damaged cells can develop into cancer cells, which can turn into mesothelioma tumors. 

Unfortunately, there’s very little people can do once a mesothelioma diagnosis confirms asbestos exposure. Victims may be able to seek chemotherapy, radiation therapy and surgery. Once a mesothelioma diagnosis reaches Stage 4 development, there may be little that can be done. 

Companies should be responsible for the safety and care of their workers. Victims who aren’t compensated for their medical conditions or fatal death in the family due to asbestos exposure may need to understand their legal rights.

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