There are a number of different jobs where workers were exposed to a large amount of asbestos on a very frequent basis. People who have worked in mines may have an increased risk of developing mesothelioma cancer due to asbestos exposure on the jobsite.
Asbestos is the generic name for six naturally occurring minerals that can be mined. It is composed of silicon, oxygen, hydrogen, and several different metals. The miners who worked in asbestos mines, or other mines that could have been contaminated with asbestos, may have been exposed to dangerous amounts of asbestos.
Throughout the 20th century, tons of asbestos were mined in our country and put in thousands of everyday products. Asbestos was very inexpensive and was used as filler in many different products throughout many different industries because the mineral was strong, durable, non-conductive, and resistant to heat and flame. There were at one point 60 asbestos mines on the East Coast alone, with many other mines scattered throughout the United State.
These mining operations required miners to haul rock out of open-pit mines where asbestos deposits have been drilled or blasted out of the rocky landscape. The asbestos had to then be separated from the rock. There were several methods of doing this, but all methods required that the rock be crushed and sifted or vacuumed to remove the asbestos from the rock debris. These processes of digging, drilling, blasting, and sifting all created huge amounts of asbestos dust. The small airborne asbestos fibers put miners, their loved ones, and those who lived near these mines at risk of developing mesothelioma cancer. When asbestos fibers are released they can linger in the air and cling to clothing where they can easily be ingested or inhaled. As these fibers find their way into the body, they can become lodged in organ tissues causing scarring and inflammation that may lead to the development of mesothelioma.
Unfortunately, millions of people have been exposed to asbestos over the years. Only now are we able to see the disastrous effects of asbestos exposure in the workplace. Generally, it takes 10 to 60 years from the time of asbestos exposure until symptoms appear or mesothelioma is diagnosed.
Many of the companies have established trust funds to pay compensation to persons injured by asbestos.
If you have mesothelioma, or other asbestos-related injury, and wish to consult an attorney about your legal rights to compensation, CLICK HERE for a free consultation.