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Asbestos Causes Devastating Health Issues in Pennsylvania

PA Asbestos Lawyers Filing Claims for Injured Victims

Formerly Lauded for Its Ability To Withstand Fire, Asbestos Now Lurks Within Aging Structures in PA, Presenting a Persistent Health Hazard Over Time.

Asbestos Causes Devastating Health Issues in Doylestown, PennsylvaniaAsbestos, once widely used for its fire-resistant properties, has been linked to several severe and usually fatal diseases. In Pennsylvania, common asbestos-related diseases include mesothelioma, Asbestosis, lung cancer, and pleural plaques. Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart and is almost exclusively caused by asbestos exposure. Asbestosis is a chronic lung disease resulting from inhaling asbestos fibers, causing lung tissue scarring and several other respiratory ailments and issues. Individuals who experience prolonged exposure to asbestos can significantly increase the risks of developing certain cancers, especially lung cancer, particularly for smokers. Pleural plaques, while usually benign, are thickened patches that arise on the pleura (the lining of your lungs) that can indicate asbestos exposure and may signify more severe conditions.

Pennsylvania’s Asbestos Hotspots

When it comes to asbestos exposure in Pennsylvania, certain locations and occupations pose a higher risk. Industrial sites, such as factories, refineries, and power plants, particularly those in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, have a history of using asbestos in their equipment and insulation. Shipyards, including the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, have also been significant sources of asbestos exposure. Construction sites, especially those involving older buildings like schools, hospitals, and office buildings, often contain asbestos in insulation, flooring, and other materials. Automotive repair shops are another high-risk area where mechanics working on older vehicles may encounter asbestos in brake pads, clutches, and gaskets.

Pennsylvania Laws Protecting Against Asbestos Exposure

Pennsylvania has taken meaningful steps to protect its workers and the greater public from asbestos exposure. The Asbestos Occupations Accreditation and Certification Act of 1990 is a crucial state law that mandates certification for individuals involved in asbestos-related activities, including contractors, inspectors, and supervisors. The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) in Pennsylvania oversees the removal, collection, and disposal of asbestos-containing materials, requiring specific notifications and fees for asbestos abatement projects. Furthermore, federal regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) apply in Pennsylvania, ensuring the safe handling and removal of asbestos and asbestos-contaminated materials.

The Devastating Spread of Asbestos Fibers

Back in the 70s, studies started coming up with results that pointed to asbestos having some really adverse effects on humans. Across the US, from contractors to companies, the use of building materials containing asbestos began to decrease. However, a lot of damage had already been done, and asbestos was present in many workplaces, schools, and other buildings. Aside from this, asbestos appeared in different places, including industry-specific items and materials. However, what was it that was and is so bad about asbestos anyway? Asbestos is a dangerous material, but asbestos fibers are the scariest component. The fibers, whether inhaled or ingested, can lodge in various parts of the body, which leads to the severe health issues asbestos is now notorious for causing.

The primary areas affected by asbestos exposure include the lungs, the pleura, the abdomen, and less commonly, but still conceivably, the heart. Inhaled fibers can cause diseases like mesothelioma, Asbestosis, and lung cancer. The lining around our lungs, also called the pleura, is the common site for pleura plaques and mesothelioma. Ingested asbestos fibers cause peritoneal mesothelioma, which is how the abdominal lining gets affected. Lastly, although again a rarer occurrence, asbestos can seriously affect and agitate the pericardium lining of the heart, leading to pericardial mesothelioma disease.

Varied Symptoms of Asbestos-Related Diseases

Symptoms of asbestos-related diseases often take decades to form after one is first exposed, which makes early detection extremely challenging. Common symptoms include shortness of breath, chest pains, abdominal pain, and fluid buildup around your lungs or abdomen for mesothelioma. Alternatively, Asbestosis is distinguished by its persistent cough, tightness of the chest, and difficulty breathing or shortness of breath. Lung cancer symptoms can include coughing, chest pain, weight loss, and blood in the sputum. Although detectable via imaging scans, pleural plaques are mostly asymptomatic.

The Path to Compensation for Asbestos Exposure in PA

If you have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, you might be wondering if you can sue for asbestos exposure. In Pennsylvania, individuals who have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease can indeed sue for compensation. Lawsuits can be filed against property owners, employers, and manufacturers who fail to protect individuals from exposure to asbestos. Lawful claims can include personal injury suits for individuals diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases and wrongful death claims by family members of individuals who died due to asbestos exposure.

Pennsylvania Lawyers Filing Lawsuits for Injuries from Asbestos ExposureUnderstanding Pennsylvania’s Asbestos Lawsuit Deadline

PA has specific statutes of limitation related to asbestos lawsuits. In most instances, you would have two years to file from the official day of diagnosis when pursuing a personal injury suit. Families seeking to file wrongful death claims have two years from the date issued on the death certificate. Given the latency period for asbestos-related diseases, acting promptly once a diagnosis is confirmed is critical.

Talk to Northeast Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Asbestos Lawyers for a Free Consultation

A skilled Pennsylvania asbestos injury attorney at Cohen and Rielchelson will provide you with invaluable guidance and assistance in your case for obtaining damages. We can help investigate your exposure to identify when and where it occurred, in the event you are unsure, or to build evidence to confirm the claim, which is crucial to a successful case. A case of this magnitude has to be done precisely, with each legal document filed correctly and within the statutory deadlines. Our personal injury lawyers will work with the responsible parties and fight relentlessly to negotiate settlements to obtain complete compensation without a lengthy trial. If a settlement cannot be reached, we will represent you in court to deliver a compelling and solid case for the maximum compensation award.

If you or a loved one has been affected by asbestos injuries or conditions in Buckingham, Fairless Hills, Warrington, Bensalem, Langhorne, and towns nearby Northeast Philadelphia & Lower Bucks County, Pennsylvania, contact an experienced Pennsylvania asbestos lawyer at (215) 337-4915 for a cost-free case review.

Free Case Evaluation for Pennsylvania Injury Victims

With looming medical bills and the uphill battle of recovery ahead, we do not burden you with yet another financial responsibility during this trying time. We abide by a contingency model, which essentially means that until you receive compensation, we work for you for free. With centrally-located offices in Bensalem, our skilled legal professionals have been serving clients throughout Bucks County and Northeast Philadelphia for over 40 years. We are committed to providing unparalleled advocacy, advisement, and assistance to our clients while confronting those who would seek to deter you as aggressive, unwavering champions of your interests. Contact our Bensalem offices today to request your free, confidential consultation.