Monumental asbestos ban will save lives, hold corporations accountable

Full Asbestos Ban in the US

A long-awaited federal ban on products containing asbestos by the U.S. will save countless lives of workers, consumers and their families, while placing the U.S. in line with most other industrial countries that have already banned the material, attorneys at Waters Kraus Paul & Siegel said Tuesday.

The March 18 order by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) marks the first U.S. action in response to the known dangers of asbestos since a 1989 ban was overturned under corporate pressure in 1991. The order specifically bans chrysotile, also known as white asbestos. Chrysotile is one of six types of asbestos frequently found together in the mining process.

“This is something that should have happened in the 1970s and 1980s, and we applaud the EPA for taking this fundamental step,” said firm partner Chris Johnson, a veteran asbestos-exposure trial lawyer. “By outlawing the use of asbestos in products, it will keep many, many people safe who otherwise would be exposed to asbestos.”

In addition to banning chrysotile asbestos in the U.S., the EPA order is an important step in holding corporations accountable for harms already caused by asbestos exposure. Corporate defense lawyers routinely claim in court proceedings that chrysotile asbestos is not dangerous. By joining the World Health Organization and more than 50 other countries in banning chrysotile asbestos, the EPA ban makes it much more difficult for corporate defendants to make that claim in court, Johnson said.

“This is the government saying there is no safe form of asbestos,” Johnson said. “Manufacturers cannot credibly claim that chrysotile asbestos is not dangerous.”

What is asbestos?

Asbestos is a naturally occurring fibrous mineral that possesses remarkable resistance to heat, fire and electricity. Its insulation qualities made it a widely used material in construction, manufacturing, military settings and in consumer goods. During the 1960s and 1970s, researchers linked asbestos exposure to serious medical conditions, including permanent scarring of the lungs and an incurable type of cancer known as mesothelioma.

Fibers embedded in the lung tissue over time may result in lung diseases such as asbestosis, lung cancer, or mesothelioma. It can take from 10 to 40 years or more for symptoms of an asbestos-related condition to appear.

Every year, more than 40,000 people die from mesothelioma and other medical conditions caused by asbestos exposure.

How We Help Victims of Asbestos Exposure

Seek justice with the help of our experienced asbestos attorneys. Our asbestos law firm has represented individuals like you affected by asbestos exposure for over 20 years, aggressively fighting the corporate giants responsible for their dangerous products. If you or a loved one were exposed to asbestos or suffered from a disease caused by asbestos, like mesothelioma, we can help.

What are my chances?

That’s the first question everyone asks. The truth is it’s impossible to know. But we can tell you this. Waters Kraus Paul & Siegel has what it takes to fight against big corporate interests and win. That’s why we’ve taken more mesothelioma trials to verdict than any other firm. And that’s why we’ve recovered more than $1.3 billion for clients like you. Do you think you have a case? Contact us now to speak with an attorney.

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