- Asbestos still kills around 5000 workers each year, this is more than the number of people killed on the road.
- Around 20 tradesman die each week as a result of past exposure
- However, asbestos is not just a problem of the past. It can be present today in any building built or refurbished before the year 2000.
When materials that contain asbestos are disturbed or damaged, fibres are released into the air. When these fibres are inhaled they can cause serious diseases. These diseases will not affect you immediately; they often take a long time to develop, but once diagnosed, it is often too late to do anything. This is why it is important that you protect yourself now.
Asbestos can cause the following fatal and serious diseases:
Asbestos-related lung cancer
Linemen, wiremen and electricians typically encounter asbestos in two ways: Fibers may be released when existing asbestos-containing construction materials are cut or removed, or they may be released when working on older equipment, such as turbines, generators, heating units and hot water tanks.
The date of the materials is a factor. Asbestos use was limited in the mid-1970s, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) deemed asbestos so dangerous that it issued a regulation that banned its use in most products manufactured or built after 1989.
Asbestos exposure can cause mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer, laryngeal cancer, ovarian cancer, testicular cancer and pleural plaques. The severity of these illnesses differ, but all usually take a long time to develop.
For example, mesothelioma can take up to 45 years. Fibers penetrate the lung, stomach or abdomen walls and cause cancer in the lining. It is aggressive, and survival rates are low. Similarly, with the other cancers, the fibers enter that organ and affect the cells. Asbestosis occurs over a period of 10–20 years. Fibers accumulate in the lung and cause scarring. Over time, the lung tissues thicken, causing pain and restricting breathing. Pleural plaques are patches of thickening in the lining of the chest wall. They are a symptom of asbestos exposure but are benign and usually don’t cause any pain.
I came across this article By Tom O’Connor, Published In May 2017 Read Full Article
Asbestos danger is real in the workplace and according to this article also applies to Electricians and IT workers, this is why OSHA & AHERA set regulations that include a mandatory 2 Hour Asbestos Awareness training for all workers that may come in contact with Asbestos