Asbestos in Mineral Wool Explained
Mineral wool is most often sold in sheets or blankets as an insulation. It is used to keep the temperature regulated in residential and commercial properties. Mineral wool can also be used for soundproofing and in hydroponic and filtration applications.
Mineral wool is made of slag–the byproduct or waste that comes from separating heavy metals from their ore. In the early 1900’s, industrial manufacturers found ways to spin this slag into a new form of insulation.
Slag insulation is also known as:
- Mineral wool
- Rock wool
- Slag wool
- Mineral slag
- Woolfelt/Wool felt
There is at least one manufacturer that would intentionally stitch asbestos into the mineral wool, in an attempt to make its insulating qualities even stronger. Pure mineral wool doesn’t contain any asbestos. Other manufacturers would add asbestos to the slag when spinning it into wool.
It’s possible that cross-contamination with asbestos occurred within manufacturing plants or in the mines where the original ore was collected. This happened because asbestos wasn’t always regulated or controlled. Anyone who worked or works with mineral wool should be wary of its potential asbestos content and treat it as an asbestos danger.
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.
Who Was Exposed to Asbestos in Mineral Wool?
Mineral wool doesn’t typically contain asbestos but there are several known exceptions. One is the Spintex® brand of mineral wool, which was manufactured by Johns-Manville Corporation in Alabama, which is listed among the available asbestos trust funds. The company stitched asbestos on top of its mineral wool to enhance the insulating capabilities of their product.
Brands with an asbestos-containing mineral wool product:
- US Gypsum
It is probable that other mineral wool brands also contained asbestos and haven’t been confirmed.
Mineral Wool Exposure
Mineral wool was used in many different types of occupations and office settings. This means that the workers listed below may have been exposed to asbestos while on the job.
People in the following occupations may have been exposed to asbestos in mineral wool:
- Ore Miners
- Manufacturing workers
- Assembly workers
- Supervisors & Managers
- Other office workers
- Spintex® employees
- Construction workers
Family members of any of the above workers may have also been exposed to the asbestos in mineral wool. Second-hand exposure can occur when asbestos fibers cling to clothing and other fabrics. There are many recorded cases of second-hand asbestos exposure–these cases are from family members of those who worked with asbestos.
Today, people who work in home renovation will likely encounter mineral wool during the course of their work. If mineral wool is discovered on the job, it should be confirmed to be asbestos-free. If it cannot be confirmed, it’s critical that the mineral wool is treated like an asbestos product and all workers follow safety protocols.
Compensation for treatment, loss of income and other damages are available through Asbestos Trust Funds. Mesothelioma patients exposed to mineral wool asbestos may qualify.
Health Risks of Asbestos in Mineral Wool
When mineral wool containing asbestos is disturbed, the asbestos particles become airborne and can be inhaled by anyone in the vicinity. Once inhaled, these asbestos particles can become trapped in the mucous lining of the lungs, heart, or abdomen.
How Asbestos Particles Cause Harm
Trapped asbestos particles are sharp, like spears. The body does not have any natural mechanisms for removing these foreign particles.
Over time, trapped asbestos particles may trigger a mutation in surrounding cells, turning the cells into a form of cancer known as mesothelioma. Like all forms of cancer, these mutated cells spread and wreak havoc on the body, until they prevent an organ from performing tasks necessary for survival.
Unfortunately, mesothelioma is one of the most deadly and aggressive forms of cancer. Most patients with mesothelioma succumb to the disease within five years of diagnosis.
Mesothelioma is the most prominent health risk of asbestos exposure but it’s not the only one. Victims of asbestos exposure may also develop asbestosis, a form of lung disease caused by scarred tissue, and other debilitating lung conditions.
Seeking Justice for Asbestos Diseases
Asbestos exposure can result in serious illnesses that cause a significant financial burden, health conditions and sadly, death. Many of the companies who produced asbestos were aware of these consequences and continued to put people at risk. Today, mesothelioma victims can receive financial compensation to help alleviate some of the hurt caused by these companies.
If you have mesothelioma, you deserve justice. Our Justice Support Team can help you determine if and how you may have been exposed to asbestos. Call us at (888)360-4215 or request our FREE Mesothelioma Justice Guide to help determine what products and companies may have led to your illness.