Between 1930 and the middle of the 1970s, shipbuilders used asbestos materials for nearly every aspect of vessel building and repair. And why not? It was lightweight, cheap, flexible and strong. It resisted heat and fire, so it worked well for insulation. In fact, many flame-resistant gear, clothing and gloves contained asbestos. It seemed like a miracle.
When researchers made the connection between asbestos and a number of rare and deadly lung ailments, including mesothelioma, the U.S. placed heavy restrictions on its use. Tragically for many, too much damage already remained. Those who worked in shipyards, building or repairing ships, may have encountered exposure to asbestos and are now dealing with its painful aftermath.
Were you at risk on the job?
Even though many years may have passed since you worked in a Louisiana shipyard, it may not be difficult to connect the dots between your illness and the jobs you performed. Any uncontained asbestos is hazardous, but the greatest risk was often in these areas:
- Replacing old or damaged asbestos-laden materials with newer ones
- Working on boilers or engines containing asbestos insulation
- Transporting materials that contained asbestos
- Installing or repairing electrical wiring with asbestos insulation
- Replacing plumbing pipes that had asbestos additives
Whether you worked in civilian or naval shipyards, there is a good chance you had some exposure to deadly asbestos. When airborne, asbestos fibers can cause great harm. If you inhale or ingest them, they lodge into the tissues of your lungs or abdominal cavity, causing irritation that grows and destroys the tissue over the years. In some cases, it is decades before a victim may begin to notice symptoms, such as shortness of breath or coughing.
What is your next step?
A diagnosis of mesothelioma can be devastating for you and your family. There is no cure, and in many cases, families end up with mountains of medical bills from treatments and palliative care. You may be looking for a way to protect your family from this hardship and to seek justice for your suffering at the same time.
You certainly have many questions about your options for seeking the compensation you deserve. By reaching out to a Louisiana attorney who has success assisting others with asbestos-related claims, you may find the answers you are looking for. Even if the company you worked for is no longer in business, a skilled attorney may have the resources to build a case in your favor.