Asbestos, a type material made up of minerals, was once a popular form of insulation. Workers in various industries, such as the construction industry, shipyard industry and automotive industry often came in contact with asbestos. However, it has been well document that asbestos poses a health hazard. Asbestos fibers can be breathed in by workers exposed to the material, causing workers to suffer diseases such as asbestosis, mesothelioma and lung cancer.
Therefore, it is important that employers in Louisiana make every effort to prevent asbestos exposure. Unfortunately, some employers do not meet state and federal regulations regarding asbestos safety, leading to fatal diseases. As it stands, no amount of asbestos exposure is considered safe.
If workers are exposed to asbestos, employers must provide further protections, including providing regulated areas, exercising control over specific work activities and establishing engineering controls that lower the level of airborne asbestos at the worksite. Employers must give workers personal protective equipment to wear and if a worker is exposed to asbestos for too long a time or in too high amounts, medical monitoring of the worker is necessary.
Despite workers’ rights to be free from a workplace that is free of the risk of serious harm, some employers do not protect their employees, subjecting them to health risks, including asbestos exposure. When this happens, workers in Louisiana will want to take the steps necessary to understand their legal options, so they can make informed decisions moving forward.