Did You Suffer Mesothelioma or Asbestosis on a Construction Site?
Construction workers face the risk of injury each day on the job. In fact, in 2012, construction was responsible for the highest number of fatal work injuries of any United States industry sector.
Asbestos is another silent threat that construction workers face. If you have been exposed to asbestos and have developed a lung illness, contact a medical professional and a knowledgeable Dallas personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
What Is Asbestos?
Asbestos is a heat- and flame-resistant mineral that was once an ingredient in many different construction materials. Asbestos can be woven into fabrics, and was commonly used as an insulating material in objects such as brake linings or pipes, due to its heat resistance.
Since its widespread use, scientists have discovered that humans can develop a variety of serious lung illnesses due to breathing in asbestos particles. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that there is no safe level of asbestos exposure, meaning that the mineral should not be used in any amount in new construction.
In 1989, the EPA issued the Asbestos Ban and Phase Out Rule, which imposed a full ban on the manufacturing, importation, processing, and sale of asbestos-containing products. Countless construction projects built before 1989, however, still contain asbestos and thus pose a health hazard to workers.
Effects of Asbestos Exposure
While asbestos exposure can have a plethora of harmful effects on the lungs and respiratory system, it generally causes damage in three main ways:
- Asbestosis: A chronic lung disease in which scar-like tissue forms in the lungs, called pulmonary fibrosis. Asbestosis makes breathing more difficult, causes shortness of breath, and causes crackling sounds called “rales” when breathing.
- Lung cancer: Asbestos exposure increase a person’s chance of developing lung cancer. The severity of the disease will depend on the duration and level of exposure. Lung cancer can cause chronic cough, fever, weight loss, shortness of breath, and chest pain. It is life-threatening.
- Mesothelioma: Unlike lung cancer, which can have many causes, mesothelioma is directly tied to asbestos exposure. Unfortunately, it is an aggressive and usually fatal cancer that can cause chest pain, dry cough, weakness, and fever.
Who Is Liable After a Mesothelioma Diagnosis?
Construction companies that allow their employees to work in an asbestos-contaminated environment show disregard for people’s lives. The good news is that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the EPA have legal standards to protect construction workers from exposure.
After seeking medical treatment for mesothelioma or another asbestos-related illness, you should seek the assistance of a lawyer as soon as possible. Most states places time limits on filing a lawsuit, beginning when the asbestos-related illness was detected. In Texas, the statute of limitations is generally two years from your diagnosis.
Our Dallas asbestos exposure attorneys at Crowe Arnold & Majors, LLP understand the severity of an asbestos-related illness. Allow us to help you get the compensation you deserve, so you can focus on the future without the burden of medical bills. Whether your exposure was five years ago or 40 years ago, we can still meet with you about your potential case. For a free consultation, give our office a call at (214) 231-0544.