Every year on November 11, we remember all the sacrifices our veterans have made for us. This year, we’d like to focus on bringing awareness to the potentially-lifelong impacts asbestos exposure has on veterans’ health.
Asbestos Exposure is Common While in Service
From the 1930s through the 1970s, asbestos products were heavily used in the military. Asbestos was known for its heat resistant and insulating properties—it allowed military personnel to protect themselves and their equipment from the risk of fire. Thousands of veterans breathed in asbestos fibers every day, without knowing the harm they could cause 10 to 30 years later.
No branch of the military was safe from exposure.
Here’s a list of jobs within the Navy, Army, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard that relied on the use of asbestos:
- Construction workers
Eventually, the military became aware of how harmful asbestos could be. They started the removal process, but they’d soon learn that it wouldn’t help those who had already breathed in the toxic fibers the many years before.
For veterans who suffered exposure while in service and who developed asbestos-related disease like lung cancer, asbestosis, or mesothelioma, compensation benefits are available through the VA. More information on service-connected compensation benefits for asbestos exposure can be found here.
Why Is Asbestos Harmful?
Asbestos wreaks havoc on a person’s lungs if they become loose from products. Asbestos is present in products like flooring, roofing, cement sheet, pipe products, clutch facings, and brake lining.
Airborne asbestos fibers can be inhaled and permanently remain in a person’s lungs.
Exposure to asbestos can cause serious health problems 10 to 30 years after it’s inhaled. Among those illnesses are lung cancer and mesothelioma. While asbestos exposure is just one of the ways to increase a person’s risk of getting lung cancer, it is the only thing known to lead to mesothelioma.
You Have Important Legal Rights
Pintas and Mullins has been representing veterans diagnosed with lung cancer or mesothelioma for over 30 years. For a free consultation or to get answers to your asbestos-related questions, contact us today. We are available to help you to help you 24/7.