It’s no secret that Buffalo and Erie county see an alarming number of mesothelioma cases. That’s largely due to Buffalo’s history as an industrial city. But that raises the question, which Buffalonians were most likely to be exposed to asbestos and develop mesothelioma?
While asbestos was used in a wide variety of building materials throughout the mid-20th century, there are two groups who had a significantly higher risk of asbestos exposure than the average person: those who worked in steel mills and car factories.
Steel Mill Workers
Buffalo steel mills, like the defunct Bethlehem Steel plant in Lackawanna, NY, were a hotbed of asbestos exposure. Before the 1980s, these facilities and others like them used asbestos insulation for their blast furnaces, boilers, steam pipes, coke ovens, and gaskets used on pumps and valves.
Those who worked the furnaces and managed the casting process are at an especially high risk as they were often required to wear asbestos-fiber coats and pants without being warned of the risks.
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Car Factory Workers
The auto industry has helped Buffalo grow for nearly a century, but workers were often exposed to asbestos on the factory floor. Asbestos was a common material used in car manufacturing throughout the 20th century, especially for parts that would see a lot of heat and friction, such as gaskets, clutches, and brakes.
The Larger Issue
Remember that the more often someone is exposed to asbestos, the more likely they are to develop mesothelioma. That’s why these Buffalonians in particular are more likely to develop mesothelioma sooner than others who may have been sparingly exposed or received secondhand exposure.
When a loved one is diagnosed with mesothelioma, friends and family should be aware of emerging warning signs. Because asbestos is a fiber-like material, it can travel on clothes and in hair, and a person diagnosed with mesothelioma may have inadvertently exposed others without realizing it.
If you or someone you love were diagnosed with mesothelioma, you deserve a team that will fight for you. To discuss your case with an experienced mesothelioma attorney from Richmond Vona, LLC, please don’t hesitate to contact us for a free consultation.