Prior to the 1980s, those who had the highest asbestos risks often worked in construction or related fields. Asbestos was often used in materials like tiles or insulation that was wrapped around pipes. People who worked with these materials every day, or in an environment where they were frequently used had a much higher chance of inhaling asbestos particles.
The reason for this was simply that no one fully understood how dangerous asbestos was. It was banned for use in new construction in 1989. Modern construction crews are not going to use it at all. However, renovation teams may have a very high risk.
Asbestos didn’t have to be removed
Just because asbestos was banned for new builds, that did not mean that it had to be immediately removed from homes or businesses where it had been used in the past.
A renovation team may take a job renovating someone’s bathroom. They have to tear out all of the tile in order to start from the studs. If that home was built in 1920 and the bathroom was only renovated in 1960, there’s a very good chance that some of those materials contain asbestos. Someone building the home today wouldn’t have a problem, and the new materials that the renovation team puts in place will be safe. However, they have to consider these risks when breaking up and tearing out all of those old items.
Additionally, since the asbestos is so dangerous when you breathe it in, renovation itself increases these odds. Breaking up the materials that contain asbestos releases these particles into the air. Those who have been affected need to know what legal steps they can take.