Due to the fire-prone nature of generating power at Stratton, Ohio’s WH Sammis power plant, asbestos insulation was regularly installed throughout buildings in the machinery, walls, pipes, boilers, and electrical components. As a result, many Sammis power plant workers have been exposed to asbestos, unknowingly inhaling toxic fibers, and potentially leading to serious diseases and cancers like mesothelioma.
The W.H. Sammis power plant, owned and operated by the FirstEnergy Corporation, is the largest coal-fired power plant in Ohio. The plant was located on the bank of the Ohio River in Stratton, Ohio in Jefferson County. The plant’s first generator unit went into operation in 1959. Additional coal-fired generators were added in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
At the time, asbestos was a common construction material used in power generation facilities. It was used extensively in industry to protect ducts and pipework in environments that exposed them to high temperatures. Likewise, the walls and infrastructure of boiler rooms and furnaces used asbestos as a safety measure to protect the plant property from explosions.
The Sammis generation plant has employed thousands of technicians and support personnel, as well as independent contractors and temporary employees on site. Many former workers at Sammis and other Ohio power plants have filed injury claims. Lawyers say their employers failed to provide safe work environments or at least warn workers of the potential deadly risks of the workplaces.
Nearly any worker in an Ohio power plant could be at risk of developing serious health issues, including asbestosis, lung cancer, and mesothelioma.
Joe Lyon is a highly-rated Cincinnati asbestos lawyer and Ohio personal injury attorney representing plaintiffs nationwide in a wide variety of toxic tort and mesothelioma claims.
Asbestos-related deaths have been well-documented in the global power industry. A recent study published by the Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology, states a “vast number of employees were affected” in the power generation industry.
The study notes that the increased exposure to asbestos put several power plant occupations at high-risk of developing asbestos-related diseases such as asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma.
In the past, Ohio power plant workers often risked toxic exposure by wearing protective clothing which contained asbestos—including protective coats, aprons, mitts and masks. The asbestos insulation in buildings and clothing broke down and released toxic fibers into the air, endangering workers throughout a number of Ohio work sites.
Mesothelioma is most commonly diagnosed in men between the ages of 50 and 75 years old. There are over 2,000 malignant mesothelioma cases diagnosed each year in the United States.
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Joseph Lyon has 17 years of experience representing individuals in complex litigation matters. He has represented individuals in every state against many of the largest companies in the world.
The Firm focuses on single-event civil cases and class actions involving corporate neglect & fraud, toxic exposure, product defects & recalls, medical malpractice, and invasion of privacy.
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Coal-fired power plants like W.H. Sammis were regularly equipped with up hundreds of different asbestos-containing products for supposed protection. However, when health concerns became more obvious, the plants found it difficult to safely remove all the asbestos on the property. The following asbestos-containing products were used in power plants:
• Fire-resistant (protective) clothing
• Insulation in boiler rooms
• Fireproofing steel work
• Protection of electric cables
• Electrical cloth
• Fire blankets
• Metal mesh blankets
• Pipe coverings
• Welder’s blankets
• Packing material
An estimated 80 percent of all diagnosed mesothelioma cases reported contact with asbestos at the workplace. Workers at W.H. Sammis that may have led to a higher risk of exposure at the workplace include:
• Boiler operators
Many mesothelioma victims in Ohio develop the deadly cancer decades after exposure at the workplace. Lawyers claim that First Energy and the preceding power companies that ran W.H. Sammis knew about the deadly potential of the Sammis plant asbestos exposure risk.
Ohio power plant workers diagnosed with mesothelioma have complained that they were not given any warning, training or protective gear when handling, installing, repairing, or removing asbestos at the workplace. The courts continue to find several companies negligent.
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 lug 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 tot he 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 Cincinnati Asbestos Lawyer. The Lyon Firm has 17 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: Mr. Lyon has worked with experts in the fields of accident reconstruction, biomechanics, epidemiology, metallurgy, pharmacology, toxicology, human factors, workplace safety, life care planning, economics, and virtually every medical discipline in successfully representing Plaintiffs across numerous areas of law. 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 results.
Asbestos can be found in homes built before 1980, construction sites, and in many military circumstances. According to the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOHS), there are 75 different jobs that can expose workers to asbestos, with those jobs primarily involving construction and manufacturing. Approximately 107,000 workers are affected by 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 250,000 new cases before 2020 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.