There is a strong possibility that former workers in the Armco steel plant, now known as AK Steel, were exposed to asbestos, and may develop lung diseases, including deadly cancers such as lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Like many companies in the steel industry, Armco-AK Steel used asbestos as an insulator on its work site because of its fire resistibility. However, this material was not regulated and posed terrible risks.
The fibers from asbestos can be lodged in the lungs, which can cause scarring and in some cases, tumors. Inhaled asbestos fibers can rest in the lungs for up to five decades, causing lung cancer and other disorders, including mesothelioma.
Many former workers at the Armco steel plant have been diagnosed with mesothelioma cancer, and other asbestos-related diseases. Employees of the Armco-AK Steel Corporation may continue to suffer from this work-related condition.
Asbestos was used to insulate a variety of machinery throughout steel plants, such as:
• Hot blast stoves
• Rolling mills
• Steam pipes
Asbestos exposure also, unfortunately, remains a danger in older buildings, particularly those built before the 1980s. Therefore, workers at Armco and AK steel, in the past and present, could be exposed to toxic material.
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In addition to working in the buildings themselves, steel mill workers at Armco were also likely exposed to asbestos through protective garments, including coats, leggings, gloves aprons, coveralls and face masks that were meant to protect workers from extreme temperatures and from burns while working with molten materials.
After daily wear, fibers within the protective clothing were released and possibly inhaled by workers. Even if they were not participating in the manufacturing of steel, workers at Armco could have been exposed to asbestos and risk developing mesothelioma because of toxic building materials such as refractory bricks, floor and ceiling tiles, and liner boards.
Asbestos fibers can also become attached to clothes at a contaminated work site and contaminate worker’s home environments. The possibility of home contamination places family members at an increased risk for mesothelioma and other effects of asbestos exposure.
Breathing asbestos fibers into the lungs damages tissue surrounding the lungs. This could serve as the primary source for victims who develop lung cancer and, possibly mesothelioma.
Those who develop mesothelioma may not show no signs of illness for a long time after their first exposure. Cases of mesothelioma are often diagnosed 20 years or more after a person was first exposed to asbestos.
By the time symptoms appear, mesothelioma has most likely already reached an advanced stage. Symptoms of mesothelioma can be varied, and they depend on several factors but typically include:
• Pain in the chest and rib area
• Persistent cough
• Trouble breathing
• Mysterious lumps of tissue on the chest and abdomen
• Stomach pains
• Swelling of the abdomen
• Weight loss
It is recommended that former workers of Armco or AK Steel and other steel mills contact medical professionals about possible exposure to asbestos.
For the last 70 years, countless Americans in factories around the country have been exposed to asbestos. Data from the World Health Organization show about 30 percent of deaths from occupational cancer each year could be caused by asbestos.
One study estimates that 8,200 cancer-related deaths could be the result of asbestos exposure. The types of steel plant positions most commonly exposed to asbestos include:
• Motor inspector
The legal system holds steel plants responsible for maintaining a safe work environment for workers. When this responsibility is not met, these corporations should compensate the victims of unsafe practice.
Lawsuits contend that asbestos manufacturers knew about potential health dangers of their products as early as the 1930s and failed to warn anyone.
Many US steel plants, including Armco-AK Steel, USX Corporation, LTV Steel, Weirton Steel and Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corp. have been involved in asbestos litigation for exposing steel mill workers to toxic materials.
Recently, an Illinois jury awarded a former U.S. Steel employee with a $250 million verdict after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma, which was attributed to his exposure to asbestos from 1950 to 1981. The verdict included $50 million in compensatory and $200 million in punitive damages.
Many experience asbestos exposure through the workplace. Workplaces may have been filled with toxic materials, and employers may have failed to warn of the serious health risks of the job. Filing a suit helps to raise the awareness of job safety.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that was first utilized in the early 1900s for its insulating abilities, fireproof properties, and versatility. It has been estimated that over 30 million tons of asbestos was used in the American economy in industrial yards, homes, schools, shipyards, and other workplaces.
The natural breakdown of asbestos products and subsequent sawing or cutting of the asbestos creates dust and fibers that are inhaled and can lead to mesothelioma and other severe forms of lung cancer.
When asbestos breaks down over time or with use, the fibers of the material can become airborne, presenting a risk of inhaling or ingesting the toxin. Asbestos is a cancer-causing agent, and those heavily exposed can develop scarring in the lungs and later develop lung cancer and mesothelioma.
Asbestos was widely used in piping, insulation, electrical components, machine parts, packaging, flooring, ceiling tiles, roofing, and in many building materials.
If you were exposed to asbestos at your workplace, and have developed cancer or a related illness, you are likely to qualify for compensation.
Asbestos was cheap, durable, fire-resistant and light, and was though to be the perfect insulating material before research showed it was extremely hazardous to the health.
The success rates of settlements regarding asbestos exposure injury are quite high. It may be necessary to prove that occupational exposure is the primary cause of lung cancer or mesothelioma, though this is the job of The Lyon Firm, and we have experience in reaching large mesothelioma settlements.
Our Firm will help you find the answers. The Firm has the experience, resources and dedication to take on difficult and emotional cases and help our clients obtain the justice for the wrong they have suffered.
Experience: Joe Lyon is an experienced Asbestos Lawyer. The Lyon Firm has 19 years of experience and success representing individuals and plaintiffs in all fifty states, and in a variety of complex civil litigation matters. Asbestos lawsuits can be complex and require industry experts to determine the root cause of an accident or injury. Mr. Lyon has worked with experts nationwide to assist individuals understand why an injury occurred and what can be done to improve their lives in the future. Some cases may go to a jury trial, though many others can be settled out of court.
Resources/Dedication: The Lyon Firm is dedicated to building the strongest cases possible for clients and their critical interests.
Results: Mr. Lyon has obtained numerous seven and six figure asbestos settlements.
Asbestos can be found in factories, warehouses, hospitals, schools, homes built before 1980, construction sites, and in many military installations. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), there are 75 different jobs that can expose workers to asbestos, with those jobs primarily involving construction and manufacturing. Thousands of American workers are still exposed to asbestos each year.
Mesothelioma is a serious illness that has been linked to asbestos exposure in medical literature. It is estimated that there will be thousands of new cases due to the latency period of 20-50 years after being first exposed to asbestos.
The Lyon Firm aggressively, professionally, and passionately advocates for injured individuals and families against companies due to asbestos exposure.