Asbestos May Present Significant Hazards to Workers
Although asbestos has not been used in building materials for nearly a half-century, reports from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) indicate that up to 1.3 million workers in the United States are regularly exposed to the hazardous material each day.
When inhaled, asbestos fibers can cause serious health issues. Research shows that even short-term exposure can have a negative impact, leading to coughing fits and shortness of breath. Long-term exposure to asbestos is much worse, as it may cause conditions like lung cancer, colorectal cancer, mesothelioma and calcification and other abnormalities in the chest cavity.
The industries where exposure to asbestos is most prevalent include construction, papermaking, mining, manufacturing, roofing, shipbuilding, automotive repair and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) repair.
Employers are responsible for workplace safety
OSHA maintains strict regulations for the precautions employers must take when they know workers may be exposed to this material. These include ensuring employees are property trained, have adequately ventilated workspaces and are provided with protective clothing and equipment. Employers should also post warning signs in areas where asbestos is present and regularly check on workers for the exposure levels.
If you or someone you know has been exposed to asbestos and is now experiencing health complications, you may be able to seek compensation. The liable parties may include the company that produced the asbestos, an employer that failed to properly protect workers or contractors and subcontractors working on a project that involved exposure to asbestos.
To learn more about your legal options, consult a dedicated Atlanta personal injury attorney with McMenamy Law LLC today.