Before people understood the health issues that asbestos caused – the main one being that it can lead to an aggressive type of cancer known as mesothelioma – it was used in a lot of different products. It’s a very good insulator, for instance, because it is resistant to burning. This made people think that it was a relatively safe material to use, especially for insulation and reducing the speed at which a fire could spread through a building.
However, it then became clear that asbestos was leading to a lot of physical ailments, such as mesothelioma, and it was phased out. This began in the 1970s, and most people now believe that asbestos is no longer used. But is this true?
It’s still being used today
The truth is that some materials still contain it. In fact, people were mining asbestos in the U.S. all the way up until 2002. That may be more than 20 years ago, but it is also 30 years after asbestos began to be phased out in the 70s. This mining is much more recent than many people realize.
Also, the U.S. still imports items that have asbestos, even if the country no longer mines it and asbestos is not allowed to be used in manufacturing. Examples of products that are often imported include brake pads, cement pipes, automobile clutches, corrugated sheeting, vinyl tile and some roofing materials.
Finally, even though asbestos isn’t used as often as it was before, those materials still exist. Many old construction products contain asbestos, for example, so it is still a potential danger during building renovations or demolitions.
Seeking financial compensation
Mesothelioma is a difficult disease to treat, and it can be quite expensive. Those who have developed it need to know how to seek financial compensation for medical bills and related costs.