Pennsylvania Mesothelioma Lawyer
Pennsylvania mesothelioma lawyers work hard to ensure thousands of people in the Keystone State receive justice and compensation for their asbestos-related illnesses. Between 1999 and 2013, there were more than 14,000 asbestos-related deaths in the state. This makes Pennsylvania the state with the third highest asbestos death rate. These victims and those still fighting mesothelioma, asbestosis, or lung cancer, deserve justice and recognition.
Pennsylvania’s high number of asbestos deaths can be blamed on several factors. However, most cases of asbestos exposure occurred on the job. With over 100 years of heavy industry, it is no wonder so many Pennsylvanians have been exposed to this dangerous mineral. However, there are also natural deposits, mining, construction, shipbuilding, and other sources of asbestos in the Pennsylvania still causing harm.
Naturally-Occurring Asbestos and Mines
According to the United States Geological Survey, eastern Pennsylvania has 37 known asbestos deposits. This number comes second only to New Jersey on the east coast. Among these deposits are four former asbestos mines. In addition to asbestos mines, the state is also home to a number of coal mines known to have been contaminated with asbestos.
Asbestos mines and mines contaminated with asbestos are harmful to workers and nearby residents. Over the years, many miners were exposed to asbestos. In addition, these mines also contaminated surrounding areas, allowing asbestos waste into area soil, air, and water. Some of these former mines are now Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Superfund sites requiring major cleanup.
Asbestos Superfund Sites
Former mines are not Pennsylvania’s only Superfund sites with asbestos contamination. Another Superfund site is the BoRit Asbestos Site in Ambler, Pennsylvania. This site was used to dispose of asbestos between the early 1900s and the 1960s. During that time, waste from a nearby manufacturing plant was dumped here and accumulated to dangerous levels. The waste pile now covers more than two acres. Although the site is now slated for cleanup, in the years it sat vacant, it posed major risks for nearby residents.
Pennsylvania Industry and Asbestos
Pennsylvania has had industrial workplaces since the 1700s. Many industrial facilities used asbestos for insulation and fireproofing, and in the components of the equipment workers used. Some facilities even used asbestos in the products they made, putting workers at an even greater risk of getting sick. Industries that contributed to asbestos exposure in the state include power generation, chemicals, metalworking and refineries, shipbuilding, and construction.
For many years, steel was an important industry in the state of Pennsylvania. Steel plants involved a lot of heat and fire risks. Because of these conditions, asbestos was commonly used to insulate and fireproof the facilities. Asbestos was even used in the protective gear that workers wore. Although many years have passed since Steel’s heyday, some of these facilities still have asbestos in them.
Sites in Pennsylvania with Known Asbestos
There are many specific buildings, worksites, military facilities, and other locations in Pennsylvania known to have asbestos and to have exposed workers. Here are just a few examples:
- Allied Chemical, Philadelphia
- Alcoa, Pittsburgh
- Hammermill Paper, Erie
- Sun Oil, Chester, Marcus, and Hook
- LTV Steel, Pittsburgh and Aliquippa
- Reading Iron Works, Reading
- Sharon Steel Company, Sharon
- Standard Oil Company, Philadelphia
- Carnegie Natural Gas Company, Pittsburgh
- Pennsylvania Railroad Company, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh
- Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, Philadelphia
- Quaker State Metals, Lancaster
- Scott Paper Company, Philadelphia and Chester
- Jones and Laughlin Steel Works, Pittsburgh
Asbestos Laws in Pennsylvania
In 1990, Pennsylvania passed the Pennsylvania Asbestos Occupations Accreditation Act. This law allows the state’s Department of Environmental Protection to regulate how asbestos is handled, abated, and disposed from public buildings. Contractors who work with asbestos must be certified through the state’s Department of Labor and Industry. These contractors must notify the state before beginning any asbestos project. Although residential homes are exempt, homeowners are strongly encouraged to work with certified asbestos professionals.
Care for Mesothelioma Victims
Mesothelioma is difficult to diagnose and treat, and lung cancer caused by asbestos is also nearly impossible to cure. If you have been diagnosed with either of these asbestos-related cancers, you need the best, cutting-edge care. You can find that care at facilities the National Cancer Institute has designated comprehensive cancer centers. Centers in the state are:
- Abramson Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
- Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia
- Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia
- University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Pittsburgh
- The Wistar Institute Cancer Center, Philadelphia
Statute of Limitations
If you have been exposed to asbestos, you must take legal action quickly. Like many other states, Pennsylvania limits the time to file lawsuits against those negligent in your asbestos exposure. You have just two years from the time of a diagnosis to file that lawsuit. If you lost a loved one to one of these diseases, you also have just two years from the time of death to take legal action against those responsible.
Working with a Pennsylvania Mesothelioma Lawyer
To combat the time crunch imposed by the statute of limitations, you should hire a Pennsylvania mesothelioma lawyer or legal team. These professionals understand federal and state laws and how the justice system works. They can do the hard work while you focus on healing. Also, a qualified legal team will help you avoid common mistakes and make sure you don’t miss out on opportunities for settlements or asbestos trust funds. Find a lawyer with a proven track record of helping people like you get the justice they deserve.
Page Written by Rod De Llano, Esquire
Page edited by Dave Foster
- Van Gosen, B.S. (2006). Reported Historic Asbestos Mines, Historic Asbestos Prospects, and Natural Asbestos Occurrences in the Eastern United States. U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report., 2005-1189.
Retrieved from: https://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2005/1189/pdf/Plate.pdf
- United States Environmental Protection Agency. (2018, October 23). Superfund Site: Borit Asbestos Ambler, PA.
Retrieved from: https://cumulis.epa.gov/supercpad/cursites/csitinfo.cfm?id=0301842
- Environmental Working Group Action Fund. Asbestos Nation. (n.d.). Asbestos-Related Deaths in Pennsylvania.
Retrieved from: http://www.asbestosnation.org/facts/asbestos-deaths/pa/
- National Institutes of Health. National Cancer Institute. (n.d.). Find a Cancer Center.
Retrieved from: https://www.cancer.gov/research/nci-role/cancer-centers/find
- Department of Environmental Protection. (n.d.). Asbestos Information.
Retrieved from: https://www.dep.pa.gov/Business/Air/BAQ/BusinessTopics/Pages/Asbestos.aspx
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