As many as 1.3 million people in the United States go to a workplace where they are exposed to significant amounts of asbestos every day. The link between asbestos and serious health problems like mesothelioma was established decades ago, but many employees remain at risk. If you believe you are or were one of those at-risk employees, please read on, then contact an experienced New York City premises liability attorney to learn if you can sue if you were harmed by asbestos in a New York workplace.
How do you know if you have been sickened by asbestos in a New York workplace?
Asbestos is naturally occurring in the environment, but even short-term exposure to significant levels of inhaled asbestos fibers on the job can lead to breathing problems, coughing and shortness of breath. Long-term exposure to this carcinogen can lead to the following serious health problems:
- Lung cancer
- Mesothelioma, i.e. a form of cancer that invades the lining of the chest and abdomen
- Asbestosis, i.e. lung inflammation and buildup that can cause coughing, difficulty breathing and permanent lung damage
- Colorectal and gastrointestinal cancers
- Abnormalities, such as thickening and calcification, in the lining of the chest cavity
What jobs are particularly susceptible to asbestos exposure in New York?
Exposure to asbestos is still quite common in some lines of work. The following are some of the occupations with the most frequent and sustained exposure:
- Construction, renovation and demolition of commercial and residential buildings
- Heating and cooling equipment repair
- Automotive repair, especially brake and clutch repair
- Manufacture of products containing asbestos
- Janitorial jobs in buildings that contain deteriorating asbestos
If you or a loved one believes you were exposed to asbestos, you should reach out to a skilled New York City personal injury attorney today to discuss your options and begin crafting your strategy.
How do you prove an asbestos case against a New York employer?
The Empire State requires all employers to maintain certain occupational standards for all employees, including:
- Training of employees who will be working with and around asbestos
- Properly ventilated workspaces
- Monitoring of employees for asbestos exposure levels, including daily monitoring for workers involved in the removal of asbestos-containing materials
- Warning signs and instructions in areas where asbestos-related work is performed
- Protective clothing like coveralls, gloves, foot coverings, face shields and goggles
- Protective equipment like respirators
- Showers and other post-exposure precautions
- Medical examinations for certain workers who are exposed to high levels of asbestos
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