Although multiple industries can use it for many purposes, asbestos has fallen out of corporate favor. The reason why is simple. The expenses involved in providing employees with proper safety support when using asbestos can be prohibitive.
Claims made by workers or their family members because of an asbestos-related illness can be another major cost. Some companies have had no choice but to file for bankruptcy, resulting in the creation of asbestos bankruptcy trusts for workers who will have future claims against the company because of their work-related asbestos exposure.
Anyone who has handled asbestos professionally needs to monitor themselves for signs of related illnesses for the rest of their lives. The same is true for their family members, who can get exposed in two very common ways.
When someone works with asbestos, the welcome-home hug can be deadly
It is common practice for spouses and children to greet a family member returning home from work. Hugging someone when they have just gotten home from work for the day is a common way to greet a family member.
Unfortunately, that means that family members of those who work with asbestos could disturb asbestos particles on that person’s hair, skin or clothing and then inhale them. Especially when this happens day after day, those low levels of secondary asbestos exposure could put someone at risk for developing mesothelioma even if they have never directly handled asbestos themselves.
Workers can contaminate their homes, furniture and vehicles with asbestos
Some workers who perform industrial work will always go straight home and shower before interacting with their family members. Some may even have a separate shower just for when they get home from work.
Unfortunately, unless someone has worn coveralls on the job or taken a shower at work, they could still track asbestos particles into their vehicle and home, leaving small amounts on the floors or the furniture.
Although secondary or secondhand asbestos exposure doesn’t have as strong of a correlation with mesothelioma and other diseases as primary exposure, there is still a noteworthy correlation. Spouses, children and other people sharing living space with those who work with asbestos might eventually develop asbestos-related illnesses despite never having direct exposure themselves.
Recognizing your risk for an asbestos-related illness can help you monitor your health and seek compensation if you do receive a concerning diagnosis.