Though today we are aware that asbestos is a dangerous product, and its use has been largely banned in the United States for the past several decades, asbestos has a long history. It was used as long ago as ancient Greek and Roman times in everything from cooking pots to fabrics. It was particularly popular because of its resistance to fire and heat, as well as for its strength.
Despite the fact that people were impressed with the various applications for the material, many people realized early on that asbestos was causing illness in those who came into contact with it. Slaves that were used for mining asbestos became sick and died prematurely, as did those who spun it into fabric.
Industrial Revolution Uses
Though asbestos was deemed to be useful in ancient times, it became a necessity as the United States entered the Industrial Revolution. It was widely used in factories as well as in industrial settings. Companies used it to insulate any kind of high heat environment, and particularly boiler rooms and pipes. It was also used to provide sound insulation.
Because it was used so widely, workers in all of these environments were exposed to asbestos on a constant basis, and thought nothing of the fact that they would come home each day covered in white powder. This was the dust of the asbestos breaking down. Little did they know that by breathing in or ingesting these fine particles they were jeopardizing their health.
Asbestos Use Expanded
As the use of asbestos expanded into automobile brakes and construction, many executives in companies that utilized the material noted that long-term employees were becoming sickened years after working with it. They commissioned studies to determine whether the asbestos was causing the illnesses, and these studies determined that it was indeed due to exposure to asbestos.
Despite this news, most of the companies conspired to keep the information a secret so that the profitable use of this inexpensive material could continue. They provided no warning of asbestos’ dangers, or even protective clothing, thus putting millions of workers at risk for being diagnosed with this deadly disease.
Asbestos and Mesothelioma Lawsuits
Because of the silence chosen by these company owners and executives, many workers have been sickened and died. Today they and their families are able to file mesothelioma claims for compensation from those for whom they worked as a result of the negligence and indifference they displayed. If you know someone or have a
family member who might be experiencing some of the symptoms that are commonly associated with mesothelioma, then it would be highly recommended to consult with mesothelioma Lawyers