While "Healthy Lung Month" is almost over, the information below is immensely valuable any time of year. For more information Mesothelioma.net is a great resource for information on mesothelioma and asbestos.
Hazards Facing Employees: Asbestos and Exposure Concerns
Diving Into the Details:
After 1971, the government passed a law stating that every worker should have the right to a healthy workplace, reports the Communication Workers of America. Obvious sources of asbestos were removed from the workplace. Employees across the nation were elated.
However, it's impossible to remove every gram of asbestos from these workplaces. There are still dangers involving asbestos, such as structural items with embedded fibers.
The government couldn't go back and change the past either. People who were exposed to asbestos were forced to deal with the consequences, including the development of mesothelioma or lung-lining cancer. This cancer is rare and serious at the same time. Prognoses aren't always encouraging for any patient.
Professions of Note:
Although structures cannot be constructed of asbestos-based materials anymore, certain professions near older designs can be at risk. These particular professionals are at risk, such as:
All of these professions either touch or work around materials that may have residual asbestos. First responders who run into older buildings with the potential for damages are a good example of people who're at risk of being exposed.
Considering Other Occupations:
Teachers and mechanics have something in common: they have the potential for asbestos exposure. All Business reports that these professions involve people who may be close to asbestos materials. This fact is true for 2018 where schools might have asbestos built into certain structural items.
Mechanics have a different exposure type. The parts that they deal with, such as brake pads, might use asbestos as an ingredient. If the material breaks apart on the job, exposure is immediate.
Protecting the Worker:
If a worker worries about exposure risks, questioning the supervisor is a must. Safety and Health Magazine suggests that workers who're concerned about exposure should wear protective gear.
Gloves, masks and other products can block asbestos fibers from being inhaled. A worker has a right to know if he or she is being put in a dangerous predicament. Err on the side of caution by wearing protective gear all the time.
Be vocal about workplace safety as it pertains to asbestos exposure and mesothelioma development. Employees have every right to know if they've been exposed to hazardous materials. By being educated about asbestos and mesothelioma, avoiding them is much easier. Every worker should feel confident about the workplace regardless of the industry.