Most people think cancer-causing asbestos was banned decades ago. So, if that’s true, why is mesothelioma and lung cancer caused by asbestos products so prevalent today?
The fact is, it’s not true. Asbestos remains legal, despite the fact that once it became known as a toxic substance, many companies stopped using it to manufacture goods.
Prior to 1980, it was extremely common to use asbestos when manufacturing insulation, drywall, plaster and other products used in the plumbing, construction and manufacturing industries. Any workers who routinely came in contact with the asbestos fibers were breathing in dangerous cancer-causing particles. When the workers went home with their clothing covered with asbestos fibers, their family members were put at risk, as well. No one knew these dangers until it was far too late.
According to a recently released report put out by the Environmental Working Group Action Fund, NJ ranks eighth in the country when it comes to number of people who died from asbestos-related diseases from 1999 to 2013. During that period of time, the report revealed, 9,395 New Jersey residents died from exposure to asbestos. Ocean County, Camden County and Somerset County, home to the Johns Manville plant, reported the highest number of asbestos-related fatalities.
The approximate number of people who died throughout the country during those years sits at between 128,000 to 160,000.
Symptoms from asbestos-related diseases don’t usually show up until many years after exposure. It’s not unusual for someone who worked with the materials 30 years ago to show signs of mesothelioma and lung cancer today. The EWGA Fund says its research shows “thousands more Americans will die in years to come.”
New Jersey was and still remains a state where many manufacturers of asbestos materials headquartered. Honeywell International in Morristown still makes auto supplies and heating equipment made with asbestos. The Johns Manville plant was one of the country’s largest makers of PVC pipe, fiberglass and asbestos cement piping in 1958. The company went bankrupt in 1982 and created a fund for former employees and their families suffering from the effects of asbestos exposure.
If you or someone you loved worked at a company where asbestos construction, plumbing, manufacturing or automotive supplies were used, don’t hesitate to contact an experienced mesothelioma lawyer who will help determine if you have a claim against your former employer. Contact Lombardi and Lombardi today for skilled, compassionate legal representation.