Boilermakers and Asbestos Exposure
No profession was more exposed to asbestos than boilermakers. Their entire workspace was an asbestos den.
Everything in their complete surroundings used asbestos for heat control. Even boilermakers’ tools and clothing contained asbestos. Back then, asbestos was supposed to be their personal protective equipment.
It’s fair to say that when asbestos is properly installed and completely contained, it’s somewhat stable and harmless. However, that wasn’t the case in early boiler rooms or on old boiler manufacturing assembly lines.
How Boilermakers Were Exposed to Asbestos
- When asbestos is disturbed by installation, maintenance, or removal, it becomes friable or easily crumbling.
- As the parent product is disturbed, asbestos particles become airborne.
- Boilermakers who came in contact with asbestos products could then inhale the microscopic and invisible asbestos particles.
Asbestos-treated parts were continually moving. Workers were constantly exposed to airborne asbestos particles no matter what they were doing.