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What is Asbestos and Where Can It Be Found?

What is Asbestos and Where Can It Be Found?

Per the National Cancer Institute, ASBESTOS is the name of a group of minerals that occur naturally as masses of strong, flexible fibers that can be separated into thin threads and woven. These silicate compound fibers are fire retardant, heat resistant, non conductive, and resistant to chemicals making them ideal for many products and industrial uses. Unfortunately, asbestos contamination has serious health consequences.

As of 1989 all new uses of asbestos have been banned, but previous uses are still allowed. However, many products are no longer manufactured using asbestos, such as crayons, hairdryers, and kitchen appliances.

Aside from asbestos mines, asbestos can be found in minute quantities everywhere. These quantities are small enough that continued exposure is not considered to be a risk. But higher concentrations can be found in many places in addition to manufacturing plants and companies that use asbestos in their products. Asbestos usage in older homes was so extensive that many people are living in a potential disaster area.

Asbestos can be found in work places that employ laborers for many industries like welding, brake and auto repairs, and many others. Asbestos can be found in commonly used buildings such as hospitals, office buildings and schools, or industrial sites such as cement factories, chemical plants, or power plants, and many others.

Asbestos can also be found in older products and appliances that may be available in thrift stores, antique stores, basements and attics. These older products may well be in a state of deterioration, though they may look to be intact. These can be any product that generated heat or, like a potholder, protected from heat. They could include products that were fire or chemical retardant, such as children’s clothing and blankets made prior to 1979.

If you believe you have an asbestos-related disease you should seek legal advice without delay. For a free, personalized consultation, please contact Brown | Kiely, LLP, serving Baltimore, Maryland and Washington, D.C. clients with asbestos-related claims.