Category Archives: Asbestos Exposure

City of Austin Workers Exposed to Asbestos

An alarming report by KXAN-TV in Austin earlier this month suggests that up to 200 city employees may have been exposed to asbestos.  According to the report, investigations into city records discovered that there were a string of asbestos contaminations dating back nearly two years in multiple departments. Some Austin Water Utility workers claim they were exposed to asbestos after they were asked to remove ceiling, furniture and sweep at a utility building in 2016. They say they were not given proper equipment to do the cleaning. “I wore my dust mask for the majority of the day, but I did take it off from time to time during breaks. I guess that doesn’t really matter since they aren’t approved for asbestos,” one employee said, according to KXAN. “By the end of the day, I was drenched in sweat. My jeans and shirt were both dripping and completely covered in…
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Asbestos Exposure: Oregon Couple Wins $5.4 Million Verdict

A jury in Oregon awarded a couple $5.4 million after a man was exposed to asbestos at work for decades and now suffers from mesothelioma.  According to Oregonlive.com, the verdict may be reduced due to state laws regarding punitive damages and the fact that one of the man’s employers, the U.S. Navy may be immune from certain responsibility. The man, now 75, was exposed to asbestos while serving in the Navy for four years during the 1960s. He worked with gaskets that contained the material during his service, manufactured by John Crane Inc. Additionally, during his employment as a pipefitter following his military service, he was also exposed to asbestos. He was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2015. Oregonlive reports that jurors determined that John Crane Inc. must pay $3 million in punitive damages relating to his diagnosis and health problems. Attorneys were able to argue that the company knew about…
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When School’s Out, Asbestos Removal Increases

As we discussed in a blog post last year, asbestos exposure still remains a hazard at many school district campuses across the country.  Many campuses feature asbestos-containing molding, tiling and insulation despite decades of regulations in place for removal. To read a detailed report about asbestos in schools, you can click the source link below, which will redirect you to an Environmental Working Group website. Sadly, although laws like the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act, or AHERA, exist to regulate asbestos in public spaces like schools, agencies like the EPA are hamstrung to enforce laws due to budgeting and loopholes, allowing state agencies to apply for waivers when it comes to asbestos abatement. This can lead to contractors or school maintenance workers unknowingly being exposed to asbestos during abatement work. If you are working on demolition or cleanup projects for a school district this summer, it may be in your…
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