Asbestos in Blaze-Shield Exposure and Risks

Summary

Blaze-Shield® is a spray-on insulation and fireproofing material that was popular in construction before the 1980s. Unfortunately, the asbestos in Blaze-Shield has devastating health consequences, impacting the lives of many hard-working Americans and their families.

Blaze-Shield® is the brand name for a type of fire-resistant concrete, manufactured by Cafco International and marketed by its parent company, Isolatek International.

Asbestos in Blaze-Shield Explained

Blaze-Shield is a spray-on insulation material that was widely used between the early 1960s and the mid-1970s because of its ability to quickly fireproof, soundproof and thermal insulate a space. Blaze-Shield is also cost-effective, lightweight and easy to source.

The original formula for Blaze-Shield used asbestos, as it was one of the best heat, fire and waterproof substances on the planet. In its heydey, asbestos mines made the material cheap and easy to source and it became a common ingredient in many industrial and commercial applications.

Unfortunately, the asbestos in Blaze-Shield has deadly side-effects and people who were exposed to Blaze-Shield and other similar products, like MonoKote®, are now at risk of developing mesothelioma and other serious illnesses.

MJN Brief

Despite calls from the American people to ban the use of spray-on asbestos insulation, Congress was swayed by corporate asbestos lobbyists, particularly those at W.R. Grace, the manufacturer of MonoKote. Legislation written by those lobbyists allowed corporations to market materials as “asbestos-free” as long as the amount did not exceed 1%. At present, that rule has not been reversed, making it unclear whether Blaze-Shield, MonoKote, and other fireproof sprays are truly asbestos free.

Free Mesothelioma Justice Guide

Exposure to asbestos has led to thousands of mesothelioma diagnoses. If you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma, the Mesothelioma Justice Guide will help you understand your rights and know the next steps.

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Who Was Exposed to Asbestos in Blaze-Shield?

Construction workers, including drywallers and insulation installers, are the most likely to have been exposed to Blaze-Shield and similar asbestos-containing sprays.

When installing Blaze-Shield in a home or building, the spray-on application of the insulation would result in microscopic asbestos particles being released into the air. Nearby construction workers who did not use respiratory masks could then inhale those asbestos particles into their body.

People who worked with Blaze-Shield are also at risk, as Blaze-Shield is a particularly crumbly form of insulation.

MJN Brief

According to the University of Wisconsin’s maintenance department, fireproofing like Blaze-Shield poses a substantial health hazard due to its tendency to become airborne. Blaze-Shield, MonoKote and similar materials should be treated with an extreme degree of caution.

Blaze-Shield is among the most friable of all asbestos-containing materials, and its cleanup is best left to certified contractors. Even Blaze-Shield that’s been sealed with a resin to prevent crumbling still poses a health risk whenever the asbestos in the Blaze-Shield can still be disturbed.

Homeowners and their family members who took on their own renovations, even on a casual basis, may also have been exposed to the asbestos in Blaze-Shield or other spray-on fireproofing materials. Because of Blaze-Shield’s widespread use, it’s likely many people who worked directly with Blaze-Shield have no idea they were exposed to it.

Health Risks of Asbestos in Blaze-Shield

When asbestos particles in Blaze-Shield and other fireproofing materials become airborne, they can be inhaled by anyone nearby. These particles then work their way through the body until they get stuck, typically in the mucous lining of the lungs, abdomen or heart.

The body cannot naturally remove inhaled asbestos fibers. Instead, fibers remain stuck in the body’s tissues, possibly for several decades. Lodged fibers can interact with nearby cells, triggering a mutation that changes healthy cells into deadly, cancerous cells known as mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma develops over the course of 10 to 50 years after initial exposure to asbestos fibers. Mesothelioma is a slow-forming, yet aggressive, form of cancer that is difficult to detect until the late stages. Once mesothelioma has progressed to those late stages, it has an extremelyf high fatality rate.

Any individual who suspects they may have been exposed to asbestos should learn about mesothelioma symptoms and undergo routine cancer screening to help catch the disease as early as possible.

Access Asbestos Trust Funds

Compensation for treatment, loss of income and other damages is available through Asbestos Trust Funds. Workers with mesothelioma and other asbestos-related illnesses may qualify.

Find Out If You Qualify

Seeking Justice for Asbestos Exposure

Many construction workers and their family members have developed mesothelioma by working with asbestos-containing Blaze-Shield or similar spray-on insulation. It’s unfair that their exposure may possibly result in devastating health consequences, which is why many companies have been forced to pay compensation to their victims.

If you have mesothelioma and worked with Blaze-Shield, contact our Justice Support Team to find out exactly how you may have been exposed. Call us at (888) 360-4215 or sign up to receive your FREE Mesothelioma Justice Guide to understand the available compensation for damages and treatment costs.

View Author and Sources
Sources
  1. Asbestos Books, “Cafco Blaze-Shield Fireproofing Brochure,” Retrieved from: https://www.asbestosbooks.com/cafco3.html Accessed on June 2, 2018.
  2. Mount Sinai School of Medicine, “Work safely with spray-on fireproofing.” Retrieved from: http://contegointernational.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/nyc-coem-spray-on-fire-proofing-fact-sheet-003.pdf Accessed on June 2, 2018.
  3. ASBI, “Asbestos Abatement and Fireproofing Respray Projects.” Retrieved from: http://www.awci.org/cd/pdfs/9103_f.pdf Accessed on June 2, 2018.
  4. Wisconsin Courts, “Todd Stendahl v. A & M Insulation Co.” Retrieved from: https://www.wicourts.gov/ca/opinion/DisplayDocument Accessed on June 2, 2018.

Last modified: June 15, 2018