Bystanders Exposed to Asbestos Can Develop Mesothelioma
Bystander Exposure Common
Asbestos exposure is not limited to persons who worked directly with asbestos products. Bystanders are also exposed through their contact — either directly or indirectly — with persons who have worked with asbestos. Persons in the vicinity of a worksite where asbestos dust is present experience bystander exposure when they inhale asbestos fibers. Bystander exposure, or “second hand” exposure, is more common than most people think, and persons who believe that they been exposed should take precautions.
No “Safe Level: of Asbestos Exposure
Bystander exposure occurs because asbestos fibers are miniscule and are unknowingly breathed in by a person. It is not difficult to release these fibers — this can simply occur through the repair and maintenance of asbestos-containing products or equipment that contains asbestos parts. Once released, asbestos fibers become airborne and are inhaled by persons. These fibers, like dust, also settle on clothing, equipment, and other objects. Many scientists agree that there is no such thing as a “safe” level or amount of asbestos inhalation.
Bystander exposure is considered as a form of occupational exposure. There are many examples of bystander exposure. Sailors were exposed to asbestos while standing watch on vessels that were being repaired due to asbestos dust that was released by shipyard workers. Carpenters were exposed to asbestos dust that was released through the work of nearby plasterers who installed, repaired or replaced asbestos drywall and ceiling tile. There have also been cases where office workers have been exposed through the presence of asbestos products at their worksites.
Bystanders Exposure Can Lead to Mesothelioma
Bystander exposure is more common than most people think. A bystander’s level of exposure can be substantial and can lead to the development of asbestos diseases such as mesothelioma. The bottom line is that exposure to asbestos is dangerous — and deadly — under any circumstance, whether direct or indirect.
There are various warning signs of asbestos disease due to secondhand exposure. Some of the warning signs include shortness of breath, chest pain, back pain, and coughing. The latency period for asbestos disease is long and symptoms may appear decades after the exposure occurs.
Courts Recognize the Rights of Bystanders
Courts have recognized the rights of bystanders who have been exposed to asbestos. They have allowed bystanders and their families to receive compensation for injuries they have suffered related to their asbestos exposure. It is important that you preserve your legal rights. If you believe that you have contracted mesothelioma as a result of your secondhand exposure to asbestos, please contact the Galiher Law Firm immediately so we can help you and your loved ones.
No Safe Level of Asbestos Exposure
Bystander exposure is typically associated with being on the job. However, a delivery man or resident of a building who lives in a building or walks by a site where asbestos is being worked on may also unknowingly be exposed to asbestos.
A bystander can have substantial exposure to asbestos however, there is no safe level of exposure to asbestos. Asbestos exposure even in small amounts can cause asbestos related diseases and mesothelioma. If you believe you have been exposed to asbestos as a bystander it is important to have regular checkups with your doctor.