Asbestos sheet was once used to make sheet rope to wrap around heating and cooling systems. The significant amount of insulation created by sheet rope protected boilers and pipes from losing heat. Individuals who worked near boilers, pipes, and refrigeration units often used sheet rope to perform their job duties. As a result, many of these workers were exposed to airborne asbestos that arose from sheet rope.
The History of Asbestos Sheet Rope
For most of the 20th century, a countless number of workers in nearly as many industries fell victim to airborne asbestos while performing their job functions. Asbestos, praised for its light weight and excellent insulating abilities, was widely used in general construction as well as construction of ship yards and power plants. During this time, many of the companies who used sheet rope laden with hazardous asbestos were aware of its dangers. However, these companies often intentionally suppressed this information from being disseminated to workers who handled asbestos on a daily basis.
The Dangers of Asbestos
The dangers of asbestos have been well-recorded for several years now. Much of this documentation is the result of an increasing number of court cases that have brought this to the public’s attention. Litigation around this issue has virtually forced companies that once held back this information to make it known to the general public as well as their employees.
The proliferation of this information’s availability has made the general public aware of the dangers of asbestos and ensuing conditions such as mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that has a detrimental affect on the abdomen, heart, and linings of the lungs. Despite its rare nature, the occurrence of mesothelioma in those who have worked around asbestos is five to ninety times more prevalent than in cases of those who haven’t been exposed to asbestos.
The Composition of Sheet Rope Asbestos
Tiny fibers of asbestos comprise the actual asbestos dust that causes harmful effects when inhaled or swallowed. Because of the unique nature of asbestos, it is very difficult for the body to naturally get rid of this substance. Rather than being expelled from the body, asbestos fibers get trapped in the abdomen, heart, or lungs. These harmful fibers can lie undetected for three or four decades before any noticeable symptoms arise. Most people don’t detect the presence of asbestos fibers until conditions like mesothelioma have been discovered.