Asbestos use in building materials, brake pads and other industrial products has declined steadily since the 1970's. From its peak in 1973 (where more than 800,000 metric tons were used) only 1,180 metric tons of asbestos were used in 2011. Nevertheless, the number of illnesses, particularly mesothelioma, has not been abated.
As many of our readers have already come to know, mesothelioma is a rare and deadly form of cancer linked to the ingestion of asbestos fibers. While we work diligently to hold businesses and manufacturers accountable for their actions, we never lose sight of the fact that human beings are at the center of our work.
Asbestos removal can be a costly and delicate process. It is important that the guidelines regarding proper removal be followed, for the consequences could be deadly to unwitting workers. Also the fine and penalties associated with violating OSHA regulations (as well as state and federal environmental laws) can be much more than removal costs.
A number of states are considering (or have enacted) legislation to change the way mesothelioma cases are litigated. The new proposals are ostensibly based on the desire to make the litigation process more efficient, and to offer more transparency for mesothelioma victims.
Last week we reported on a California company that faced more than $100,000 in fines due to mishaps while removing materials that contained asbestos fibers. Essentially they failed to water down such materials to prevent fine particles from being ingested by workers.
When construction companies are hired to demolish or renovate buildings, a great deal of care must be paid to removing asbestos from such sites. Specifically, it is an beneficial (and accepted practice) to determine the presence of materials containing asbestos fibers, and to wet them before they are removed.
With many of our posts, we have discussed issues regarding mesothelioma myths and new treatment options. Through this post we want to educate our readers on the basic stages of legal action involving mesothelioma.
As we begin our next post of 2013, we want to revisit (and debunk) many of the myths associated with asbestos exposure and mesothelioma. We believe that by educating our readers, those suffering from undiagnosed cancer may take the time to get screened (and treated) before it becomes terminal.
In our previous posts we noted that many mesothelioma patients cannot benefit from early detection or screening methods. This often leads to the terminal nature of the disease. However, a new clinical testing endeavor suggests that future patients can have their cancers detected earlier through a simple urine test.
The dust clouds that emanate from trucks and busses in rural North Dakota may not seem harmful, but a recent study published in the July issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) suggests that these clouds may have high levels of erionite, a mineral that can cause mesothelioma, a form of lung cancer linked to continued asbestos exposure.