- 1 Mesothelioma Awareness: The Deadliest Cancer Caused By Asbestos Exposure
- 2 What are the 20 deadliest occupations that expose employees to asbestos?
- 2.1 1) Boiler workers
- 2.2 2) Construction workers
- 2.3 3) Firefighters
- 2.4 4) Industrial workers
- 2.5 5) Insulators
- 2.6 6) Factory workers
- 2.7 7) Power plant employees
- 2.8 8) Shipyard workers
- 2.9 9) Steel mill employees
- 2.10 10) Textile mill employees
- 2.11 11) Automotive manufacturers
- 2.12 12) Electricians
- 2.13 13) Hairdressers
- 2.14 14) Engineers
- 2.15 15) Carpenters
- 2.16 16) HVAC workers
- 2.17 17) Oil refinery employees
- 2.18 18) Plumbers
- 2.19 19) Railroad workers
- 2.20 20) Paper mill producers
- 3 Bottom Line
Mesothelioma Awareness: The Deadliest Cancer Caused By Asbestos Exposure
Mesothelioma cancer is a fatal disease that is caused by exposure to asbestos. The tumor mainly affects the lungs and chest-a thin tissue layer that covers vital internal organs(mesothelium) is changed. Though the effects may be not might be direct, the cancerous cells develop in the body slowly. Many workers who were exposed to asbestos in their line of duty developed signs of mesothelioma cancer after many years of exposure. It takes many years for the effects of inhaling of asbestos to be evident in the body.
In the 20th century, asbestos was widely used due to its unique features like the ability to withstand extreme temperatures, strength, fire, and resistance. Most industries used the mineral for insulation purposes.
Earlier the effects of asbestos were unknown, however, the government, later on, discovered how fatal the crystal was and offered precautions while using the gem. Despite awareness of the effects of the naturally occurring mineral, most industries still expose their employees to the danger of asbestos. The affected employees have a right to compensation if they show any signs of mesothelioma cancer.
What are the 20 deadliest occupations that expose employees to asbestos?
1) Boiler workers
Asbestos can withstand high temperatures. Due to its unique properties, it was used in the 19th century to build boilers. However, when the effects of asbestos were discovered many industries avoided the use of the mineral.
Boiler workers who are responsible for attending, repairing and cleaning boilers are still being exposed to asbestos. Old buildings constructed in the 20th century are still made of asbestos. In their line of duty boiler workers are expected to maintain boilers. The boilers maybe damaged and release asbestos and the workers end up inhaling. The inhalation of asbestos for long periods will cause mesothelioma cancer. Boiler workers should take necessary precautions when handling buildings constructed with asbestos.
2) Construction workers
Buildings constructed 20 years ago that are still in existence contain a large amount of asbestos. The ceilings, walls, insulation pipes, boiler rooms, and floors were mainly built with asbestos. Though the government states that construction workers should be provided with proper protection in their line of duty most industries don’t adhere to it.
More than one million workers in the construction sector are exposed to asbestos annually. The affected workers then transfer the exposure to their families through dirty clothes and body. Most construction workers are at the danger of developing asbestos due to daily exposure to the deadly mineral. Due to increased risks in the construction industry workers have a right to file for a lawsuit to demand compensation of any illness-related to exposure at the workplace. The employer should cater to all the lost wages and hospital bills.
When a building is on fire, it collapses. A burning building disintegrates and produces asbestos from its roof, floor, insulators, and ceilings. If a firefighter is not adequately protected with protective gear, they inhale the asbestos. Exposure mainly occurs in buildings constructed in the 1980s when asbestos was massively being used.
Continued exposure during firefighting tasks puts firefighters in the risk of getting mesothelioma cancer and other related illness. Firefighters should have secure safety gadgets to ensure they don’t expose their body to the harmful mineral. However, most firefighting companies often ignore the need for protective wearing and highly expose their employees to health hazards.
4) Industrial workers
Many industries used asbestos in their buildings to protect their employees from extreme heat-since asbestos is a good insulator. Asbestos was mainly used to make ceilings, pipe wrappings, floors, ceilings, among others. When asbestos becomes friable, the workers can inhale it leading to mesothelioma cancer. 80% of industrial workers often die due to mesothelioma cancer.
Due to the useful features of asbestos, many industries up to now have not been able to eliminate the use of asbestos effectively. Industrial workers are routinely exposed to harmful products. The inhaled asbestos dust interferes with the lining of vital organs in the body of the employees leading to mesothelioma cancer.
Insulators are professionals in making heating pipes and spray equipment. Asbestos is a heat-resistant mineral and was mainly used to make heating pipes. Direct contact with asbestos makes insulators the most endangered people to suffer cancer. Even though industries are avoiding the use of asbestos in making heating pipes insulators are still at risk.
Earlier versions of heating pipes still have asbestos in them. In the attempt to repair these pipes the asbestos may become airborne putting the employees at the risk of exposure. Daily exposure interferes with the mesothelium tissues leading to mesothelioma cancer.
6) Factory workers
Most production equipment in the factories contains asbestos. When these products become friable, the employees are at the risk of inhaling asbestos. Despite the type of job one does at the factory the risk of exposure is almost the same. Even people who work at the office in the factory are still being exposed to the mineral since they will be moving around the factory.
The average working hours include 8 hours, and it is a long period for being exposed to asbestos. A company needs to provide protective gadgets that protect employees from inhaling asbestos fibers. However, many industries have ignored the need to safely protect their employees, putting factory workers at risk of asbestos exposure. It is the deadliest job that cause mesothelioma cancer.
7) Power plant employees
Those responsible for installing and maintaining electrical power plants are at very high risk of exposure to the deadly mineral. Asbestos was mainly used in power plants as it is fireproof. Asbestos is a toxic substance, and prolonged exposure to the metal leads to fatal illnesses such as mesothelioma cancer. Many power plant workers were found to have lung cancer, mesothelioma cancer, and asbestos later in their life. The effects are diverse and not only affect people who directly handle the mineral but anyone within the environs of the asbestos use or production.
Many companies know the dangers of asbestos but still exposes their employees to the substance. The side effects of asbestos not only affects the employees but also the family of the employee. Due to the danger posed by asbestos, the government introduced lawsuits giving employees and their families freedom to file for compensation.
8) Shipyard workers
Asbestos can adequately resist high temperatures, and corrosion-it was used to build ships due to its unique characteristics. Asbestos was used to insulate water pipes, steam pipes, and boilers. Asbestos dust was found to build up in poorly ventilated areas exposing the workers to dangers of asbestos.
The asbestos effects on the employee’s body became resistant to any treatment leading to cancerous cells that are fatal. On discovery of the dangers of the mineral the government attempted to replace asbestos insulators with the non-asbestos insulators-the process is not yet finalized, and shipyard workers are still being exposed to asbestos.
9) Steel mill employees
Steel mill workers are responsible for producing military and construction products. Steel mill employees include welders, millwrights, and casters. Asbestos was primarily used in the steel mill industries due to its ability to withstand extreme temperatures and its high resistance ability. Also, asbestos was popularly used as it was cheap and easy to obtain.
Asbestos workers in the 20th century faced the risk of inhaling asbestos dust found around the operating equipment. Despite the level of awareness of asbestos dangers being high some steel mill industries are ignoring safety precautions of their employees and exposing their employees to the health hazard mineral.
10) Textile mill employees
In earlier years asbestos was combined with other materials to produce clothes putting the employees at the risk of getting exposed to asbestos. Many machines used asbestos as an insulator making the risk of inhaling the toxic substance higher.
Today textile mill workers still face the danger of exposure to asbestos if the textile mill industries still use the traditional machine in making clothes. Most of textile mill employees died of mesothelioma cancer due to daily exposure to the deadly substance.
11) Automotive manufacturers
Automotive workers mainly repair and manufacture automobiles. They are at risk of mesothelioma cancer due to high exposure to asbestos. Most products automotive workers use are produced using asbestos. They are daily exposed to the mineral in their line of duty-when asbestos fibers is released to the air.
The employees recently at a higher risk of exposure are the ones who repair automobiles of earlier versions. During the repair, damaged parts often release asbestos dust leading to an employee inhaling. Preventive measures should be taken especially in automobile repair that contain asbestos.
Electricians are involved in putting up and maintaining electrical cables. They often collaborate with engineers for the safe installation of power cables through the floors, walls, and ceilings. Though asbestos is almost being phased out of use, electricians are still at the risk of being exposed.
They can be exposed to asbestos fibers and dust while repairing and installing cables in buildings that were built with asbestos. In the 20th century, asbestos was being massively used in construction due to its unique features and many construction companies incorporated it as it was inexpensive and readily available. Electricians need to take precautions while in buildings built with asbestos.
Hairdressers and barbers still face the risk of exposure to asbestos. Earlier models of hair dryers used asbestos to shield customers from extreme heat. Daily exposure to the hair dryer nearby exposes the hairdressers and barbers the danger of high accumulation of the toxic substance in their body.
Many chemicals used in the beauty industry still contain asbestos substances. Direct and prolonged contact with the materials puts hairdressers and barbers at the risk of infecting mesothelioma cancer. The mineral slowly accumulates in the body of the hairdressers. They have to routinely use hairdryers and chemicals thus the risk of mesothelioma cancer is very high.
Engineers are also at risk of being exposed to asbestos. Though they may not be directly contacting the mineral they maybe supervising workers working with the toxic materials. Additionally, when engineers use products that were built using asbestos they still face the danger of exposure to the poisonous substance. Engineers are one occupation at the highest threat of being exposed to asbestos-related cancer. They often work in poorly ventilated areas and closed environments where the accumulation of asbestos is high. One time exposure of the mineral is not fatal however frequent exposure leads to irreversible damage in the body.
Buildings built in the 1970s primarily incorporated asbestos in building ceilings, insulators, walls, among others. While in the line of supervision the mineral may disintegrate and breakdown to particles and become airborne. Asbestos fibers once inhaled nearby for long periods leads to lung cancer, asbestos-related diseases, and mesothelioma cancer.
Carpenters mainly make wood related-equipments. In buildings, there is a need to install cabinets, tables, and wooden seats. Permanent installation of wooden equipment such as wardrobes and cabinets involve the carpenters being in the building for long periods. When working in buildings that were built with asbestos carpenters are at risk of exposure to asbestos. During the process of hammering asbestos disintegrate releasing particles in the air which are inhaled by the carpenters.
Carpenters also directly use asbestos materials. Adhesives, pipe wraps, glues, among others are made of asbestos, and daily contact with the harmful substance puts carpenters at the risk of being infected with mesothelioma cancer.
16) HVAC workers
Heating, ventilation and air conditioning workers are still are at risk of mesothelioma cancer. Though the use of asbestos is almost being burnt out of existence earlier HVAC systems mainly used the harmful products unknowingly. Asbestos uses are significant though it has adverse long-term effects on the body of human beings.
HVAC workers while maintaining HVAC systems built in the 20th century are often faced with significant health hazards. The asbestos dust once it piles up in a poorly ventilated becomes harmful to the body if inhaled for long periods.
17) Oil refinery employees
Oil refinery employees are responsible for the manufacturing of crude oil and processing it into finished products such as petroleum, and paraffin. Due to high temperatures in the crude oil refinery companies provide their employees with protective garments made of asbestos as it can withstand extreme, extreme temperatures. However, the consequences if inhaling is higher than the risk of being burnt.
Additionally, asbestos is used for thermal insulation in oil processing equipment. Once the asbestos particles concentrate in a poorly ventilated area, the employees are at the risk of inhaling large amounts of the toxic substance leading to mesothelioma cancer.
Plumbers are responsible for installing and repairing water, steam pipes, among others. In the 20th century, asbestos was massively used in making steam pipes to regulate high rates of temperatures. Although the use of asbestos is banned, pipes constructed in the 20th century still have asbestos. Plumbers while maintaining those pipes are exposed to harmful products. Long-term exposure of the substance leads to lung cancer, asbestos’s and mesothelioma cancer.
Plumbers also install pipes in buildings that were built with asbestos. When the harmful products become friable and are airborne, it exposes the employees to health hazards.
19) Railroad workers
Railroad workers involve themselves with building and maintaining of railway systems. They are at an inherent risk of being exposed to asbestos. Asbestos was widely used to make insulation materials in trains and railways, used to make cement ties and brake linings.
Any employee working in the train or railways was at risk of inhaling asbestos dust. Even though the use of asbestos is being reduced some employers are not creating awareness to their employees leading to exposure to the toxic substance.
20) Paper mill producers
Paper mill producers are responsible for producing papers. In the 1970s asbestos was primarily used in paper mill companies for insulation. Additionally, buildings were mainly constructed using asbestos. Though the use of asbestos has significantly reduced companies that were established in the 1970s still uses asbestos in their equipment.
Employees working in these companies are at risk of being exposed to the mineral. Asbestos fibers are a health hazard to the body of employees. Many employees don’t show the effects of the asbestos at early stages. The side effects become prominent, especially after retirement. Prolonged exposure to asbestos leads to mesothelioma cancer.
Asbestos was used in the 20th century due to its unique features-ability to withstand extreme temperatures, heat, corrosion, and pressure. It was mainly incorporated in construction and production materials putting the workers at health hazard risks.
Although the government became aware of the side effects of asbestos, it has not been entirely successful in eliminating the mineral. The above occupations are the deadliest jobs that cause mesothelioma cancer. Employees working under these occupations should take precautionary measures to prevent contamination of the harmful products.
Despite high awareness of the toxic product many employers are still exposing their employees to the danger of the mineral. Most employees suffer mesothelioma cancer and their employers should compensate their lost wages and affected families.
- Asbestos Exposure and Cancer Risk – Cancer National Incertitude
Asbestos and Cancer Risk – American Cancer Society
Asbestosis: Causes, Symptoms, and Diagnosis – Healthline