Many people may think that asbestos is a thing of the past. Although asbestos is no longer used in materials that are recently manufactured, that does not mean that the risk of mesothelioma has been wiped away in other types of professions, especially in firefighting. Firefighters are particularly susceptible to breathing in fibers of asbesto s, since they could be fighting fires in buildings that contain the dangerous substance.
Breathing in asbestos particles is dangerous and could cause the development of mesothelioma, which is an aggressive type of lung cancer. Different types of mesothelioma cancer can harm certain parts of the body, such as pleural, which affects the lungs; peritoneal, which affects the abdominal; pericardial, which affects the heart sac; and testicular. Breathing in asbestos fibers is the most common way to contract mesothelioma. Although there have been many types of cancers associated with firefighting, mesothelioma is among the most concerning.
Firefighting protocols are beginning to change to help protect firefighters from breathing in asbestos or other carcinogens that may land on their gear. In the past, firefighters would wear their gear back to fire house with soot and other debris that could have fallen on their jackets, pants, and hats. Recently, certain firefighter units have implemented a new practice where they remove their gear on the street after a fire and before boarding the fire truck. The gear is then bagged up and cleaned, and special wipes are utilized to wipe the skin to remove any asbestos fibers, carcinogens, or other harmful materials that precipitate illnesses.
Some firefighting units are now equipped with a gear extractor, which will remove asbestos and other harmful chemicals from gear that was used to fight a burning building or vehicle fire. This is a way that firefighters can be more proactive in protecting themselves against mesothelioma and other diseases that have been linked to breathing in fibers while fighting fires. This could also change the way firefighters approach their job and implement safety practices before and after an emergency.
If you were injured due to asbestos exposure and are considering bringing a lawsuit against your employer as a result of a mesothelioma diagnosis, contact the Philadelphia mesothelioma lawyers at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler today. We will review your case and obtain the compensation you rightfully deserve. Call us at 215-569-4000 or contact us online for a free consultation today. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, including Delaware County, Chester County, and Philadelphia County.