Although asbestos has long been known to be a highly dangerous carcinogen that can cause multiple problems from inhaling its microscopic fibers, you may still find asbestos used in all manner of substances and practices to this day. We are continuously surrounded by asbestos in miniscule amounts, and even walking the streets of New York you will likely inhale trace amounts at a non-harmful level. Some occupations, however, still face dangerous exposure to asbestos. So who is most at risk?
Per a CD study, construction workers remain the most at risk for asbestos exposure and asbestos-related illnesses. Construction workers are often exposed to asbestos products, though current safety regulations minimize exposure to a fraction of what it had been before asbestos use and mitigation was heavily regulated for safety reasons. However, many older buildings still contain or use large quantities of asbestos-based substances, and construction workers and others in the industry who work on or occupy these buildings often see higher levels of exposure.
Workers' compensation claims still often see a significant amount of asbestos-related claims. Other occupations who may be at risk include auto mechanics, plant workers, longshoremen, merchant marines, sheet metal workers, and even members of the United States Navy. There is also the risk of secondary exposure, in which your exposure to someone who has encountered asbestos may bring you into contact with the substance.
This has been an informational and educational blog post only, and should not be misconstrued as actionable legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.