Where is asbestos exposure most likely to occur?

Mesothelioma is a deadly cancer caused by exposure to the toxic substance asbestos. Every year in the United States, an average of 3,000 people receive a mesothelioma diagnosis. Annual deaths from mesothelioma total about 2,500. Although preventing asbestos exposure from a negligent party can be difficult, people in South Carolina can be more aware of common exposure sites.

Most people think of the military as protectors, but they are putting active duty members and those living near Air Force bases at serious risk for health complications. Asbestos was a common building component for buildings across most air bases and is commonly used in war vehicles and aircrafts. Those living around military bases might not realize that they are potentially exposed to airborne asbestos just by their proximity.

Industrial and commercial sites also pose a common danger. Anything from chemical plants to brewing companies may be harboring hidden asbestos, which is a frequent component of construction for both buildings and heavy equipment. Even if no new asbestos has been introduced, proper asbestos abatement and disposal should be carried out to protect workers.

What about people who do not live near military bases or work in industrial complexes? While these individuals might feel safe, asbestos may be lurking anywhere, including in homes, schools and office work spaces. Older auto parts — such as clutches or brakes — often contain asbestos as well.

The sad reality for many people in South Carolina is that hidden asbestos may be hiding virtually anywhere. In some cases, employers, business owners and manufacturers are even aware of the issue, but do not take necessary steps to warn potential victims or provide necessary safety information. In such cases, these entities can be held responsible for asbestos exposure and resulting health effects through the careful actions of a civil suit.

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