How can it be that asbestos — a toxic substance known to cause mesothelioma — is now being found in children’s crayons? Perhaps because asbestos is cheap and the crayons are made in China. In fact, India and China are two of the world’s primary users of asbestos in manufacturing today.
For decades, asbestos was used by U.S. manufacturers to make a host of products from asbestos brake pads to asbestos gaskets. Asbestos is able to withstand high temperatures, acts as an effective binder and is widely available at a low cost. Manufacturers used it in hundreds of products until the American public discovered what manufacturers had long known — that asbestos causes cancer and other lung diseases.
Many people may think that we don’t need to worry about finding asbestos in our products anymore. But now most of what we buy and use comes from China, not from the United States. And Chinese manufacturers are not bound by the same safety laws that we are in this country.
Take for example, asbestos gaskets found in 2012 in Chinese cars imported to Australia. The difference in safety standards explains how this happened and how asbestos was recently discovered in children’s crayons imported to Canada and Australia from China.
Asbestos Crayons Pose Danger for Children
The asbestos-containing crayons from China reportedly have not been recalled because of the claim that asbestos poses no threat when it’s contained in crayon wax. That’s the same excuse that U.S. asbestos manufacturers rely on to escape liability for their dangerous products. But products dry out over time. They break apart and the dangerous asbestos fibers are released into the environment, where workers and others can easily inhale the toxic substance. If civilized countries (including the United States) are unwilling to do the right thing and ban asbestos use entirely, they should at least take care to keep asbestos out of children’s products.
It’s not just the health of Canadian, Australian or U.S. children that’s in danger. Each year, many American adults develop mesothelioma as a result of their exposure as children to asbestos fibers that were brought home on their fathers’ work clothing. Now the children of China’s workers — the ones who make the asbestos containing crayons and other products — may be facing the same risk. It’s time to stop the deadly cycle.
Contact Waters Kraus Paul & Siegel to Learn More About Filing a Mesothelioma Lawsuit
If you (or a loved one) have been exposed to asbestos and diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact us by email or call us at 800.226.9880 to speak with our asbestos lawyers, like Peter Kraus and Leslie MacLean in our Dallas office, to learn more about how we can assist you and your family with a mesothelioma lawsuit.