A very popular source of asbestos-containing material is roofing shingles – that is, if it was made and used prior to the mid-1970s. Roofing shingles or tiles were often used because of their excellent resistance to the elements. However, it was soon discovered that asbestos was extremely dangerous to one’s health. As a result, most companies stopped producing materials made with asbestos, including roofing shingles.
Though there is cause for concern regarding any asbestos-related product, most roofing shingles only contained 30% asbestos fibers. Still, they are on a list of products classified as dangerous because they have “asbestos-containing materials” (ACM) in them.
Many people who manufactured roofing shingles and tiles, or who put down roofs were exposed to asbestos through roofing shingles and other related asbestos products used in that industry. As a result, many innocent lives were exposed to asbestos and these people have since become ill with lung cancers, mesothelioma and other asbestos related illnesses.
The Importance of a Medical Exam
If you have worked in the construction, remodeling or roofing industry, you may have come into contact with roofing shingles and other asbestos materials. If you haven’t done so yet, be sure to get a thorough medical checkup to determine if levels of asbestos are present in your system. A chest x-ray can usually determine lung function; however it cannot detect asbestos fibers in the lungs.
During demolition and renovation of institutional, commercial, or industrial structures, contractors are careful to follow guidelines provided to them on asbestos abatement. Those who have worked in or around asbestos removal programs know the importance of wearing the proper protective gear and masks. If you’ve helped remove asbestos-laden materials from buildings, you are at risk and should seek medical help immediately.
Do You Qualify For a Settlement?
If you have worked around roofing shingles or any other asbestos products, you may qualify for a settlement; however, each state has its own statute of limitations allowing victims of asbestos disease to file lawsuits. A lawyer should be contacted to find out about the deadlines for filing claims or lawsuits. If a loved one has died of an asbestos-related disease, you may qualify for a settlement as well.