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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Asbestos Disease Remains a Problem Despite Lower Consumption in the US

Recently release statistics from the US Geological Survey brings some hope to reducing asbestos disease in the US.  Historically, as the production of asbestos fiber lowers, so does the incidence of asbestos related disease, which is a latent medical condition that takes 10 to 30 years to manifest itself.

Asbestos this has been used for decades in the United States in militray and civilian environments in various forms including construction material and insulation. It appears in commercial and military buildings and equipment, as well as residential and consumer appliances. 

Asbestos has been causally connected to a rare and fatal cancer,  mesothelioma. Asbestos has also been linked to various other cancers including: lung cancer, a well as a pulmonary condition, asbestosis.

Even though the United States Geological Survey has reported that there is a reduction in the amount of us asbestos now still being consumed in the United States.  Asbestos remains in place in many buildings and types of equipment.It continues as a serious health issue.  When asbestos "in place" becomes disturbed by demolition, renovation and other types of construction there is a potential for human illness. Therefore, safety proportions must be taken for those who continue to be exposed including workers and even bystanders.
United States has not yet banned the use of asbestos fiber. While restrictions remain in place for its use, low dosage and minor exposures, can leed to serious illness and fatalities.
"All asbestos imported and used in the United States was chrysotile, solely sourced from Brazil. This is the first year in more than 100 years that chrysotile was not imported from Canada. There was no chrysotile produced in Canada in 2012 so domestic consumers sought other sources for their supply. The increase in the average value of all imported chrysotile was because only high-valued chrysotile was imported from Brazil; there were no imports of lower valued chrysotile from other countries in 2012. Based on current trends, U.S. asbestos consumption is likely to remain near the 1,000-ton level, as it has in the past 4 year."
Click here to read the complete report: U.S. imports and consumption of asbestos declined 10% in 2012.
Jon L.Gelman of Wayne NJ is the author NJ Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson) and co-author of the national treatise, Modern Workers’ Compensation Law (West-Thompson). For over 4 decades the Law Offices of Jon L. Gelman 1.973.696.7900 have been representing injured workers and their families who have suffered occupational accidents and illnesses.

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