Some may say that certain businesses across the country, including some here in Ohio, continue to try to keep victims from receiving the compensation they deserve. Even for those involved in or contemplating asbestos litigation, their path to restitution for illnesses resulting from exposure to this toxic substance could get more challenging. The U.S. Department of Justice has opened an investigation into allegations of fraud as it pertains to victims receiving settlements from trusts set up by companies whose aim is to limit their monetary liability.
Perhaps the only time is when it is not airborne. The only asbestos exposure that may not be dangerous to the health of Ohio residents might be when it is not exposed. Otherwise, this potential killer silently waits to be exposed to air where it can be inhaled and ingested.
After working hard all of their lives, some Ohio residents end up finding out that they suffer from an illness derived from their work environments. They may go through their lives believing that they escaped the serious health consequences arising out of asbestos exposure, until a cough or shortness of breath confirms their worst fears. Those individuals may be diagnosed with an asbestos-related illness such as mesothelioma or asbestosis.
Previous exposure to asbestos continues to wreak havoc on the lives of individuals in Ohio and across the country. Those who worked in metal factories or with high-heat machinery, in car part or textile manufacturing and materials processing plants and more all-too-frequently develop cancer or other asbestos-related illnesses, sometimes decades after exposure. For example, a widow has recently filed a lawsuit in another state, claiming that her late husband's recent death from lung cancer was caused by the asbestos he encountered throughout his career.
Many Ohioans are familiar with asbestos, the naturally-occurring carcinogenic substance historically used in the railroad industry. Although the health risks related to asbestos exposure were discovered by doctors nearly a century ago, companies in Ohio and across the nation continued to utilize the substance in manufacturing due to its inexpensive nature and flame-retardant properties. Even now, cases still come to light on an almost daily basis of workers who have developed cancer or other asbestos-related illnesses during their careers, when employers failed to advise or protect their employees.
In Ohio, exposure to toxic substances such as asbestos often occurred in factories when employees were unprotected while working with products containing hazardous materials during the manufacturing process. Unfortunately, this was far from the only scenario in which asbestos exposure occurred. In another state, for example, a widow claims that her late husband's pancreatic cancer was caused by exposure to such toxic materials during his line of work.
Research suggests that the dangerous and carcinogenic nature of asbestos has been known for over 100 years. In fact, workers were warned to avoid the substance as long ago as 1913, with researchers pushing for warning and education of workers as early as the 1930s. By the mid-1960s, experts had found a causal link between asbestos exposure and the deadly cancer known as mesothelioma.
Though the incident did not occur in Ohio, a recent wrongful death lawsuit highlights the ongoing tragedies that asbestos leaves in its wake. A grieving family was awarded a $13 million judgement after the death of their loved one from cancer caused by asbestos exposure. The man was apparently exposed to asbestos because of a sugar refinery owned by Hillshire Brands Company.