Which Products Contain Asbestos?
Which Products Contain Asbestos? Imagine you’ve been diagnosed with mesothelioma and there’s questions in your mind about asbestos. Well one question you may have is
Which products have asbestos in them?
Over the past century, there have been about 3.000 products used in America that contained asbestos and exposed workers to this industrial toxin, this poison, this carcinogen, known as asbestos. And of those 3,000 or so products, we know that they were primarily used as insulators and also for their durability — their strength, their tensile strength.
And we can talk about the insulation properties of asbestos cement and refactoring and firebrick and pipe covering, and those things are products that workers often use and were exposed to asbestos from. There’s also the strength and durability properties that were used in products such as floor tile and roofing products. Let’s talk about some of those products here today.
The first I want to talk to you about is joint compound.
And joint compound I think many of know what that is, even today, is currently used the same way it was used back in the 60s and 70s and that is still seal the joints between boards of sheetrock. Now today it doesn’t have asbestos in it because it was banned in 1977 by the Consumer Products Safety Commission. But prior to that time, joint compound from many manufacturers contained asbestos. And when this product was put on the walls in between these seams of sheetrock (or on the nail or screw heads where the sheetrock was attached to the wall) the workers would sand down that sheetrock, creating lots of asbestos dust in their work zone.
In addition, prior to that, building material (you know, sheetrock that we know of today) walls used to be constructed of plaster. Metal lathe put up, plaster mixed with water to create a slurry of plaster which was then attached and then applied to the metal lathe. And then that plaster, in many circumstances, contained asbestos.
So when the worker — and perhaps the worker is you — but when the worker sanded down that plaster that created asbestos dust which the worker breathed which can cause mesothelioma. We know that asbestos was in floor tiles up until the mid to late 80s, even as late as 1986. And these floor tiles were used in banks and buildings and factories and schools throughout the United States for many decades and they came in 9 X 9 or 12 X 12 sizes and contained asbestos (as well as other sizes).
But workers would cut these floor tiles, snap them, creating dust and that was a well-known, documented exposure to asbestos.
Other things contained asbestos as well, such as ceiling tiles in a drop ceiling and they were cut to fit causing exposure to workers. Roofing materials on pitched roofs, in residential settings some of the shingles on pitched roofs contained asbestos. And on flat roofs, in more of a commercial building, some of the rolled roofing (the base sheet and the rolled roofing felt, as well as the mastic that was used to seal various joints and the flashing material that was used by professional roofers), many of these products contained asbestos throughout the course of the last century.
And one more thing is something that we know of as “bakelite” which electricians primarily dealt with when dealing with electrical panel boxes. And we all have one of these panel boxes in the basement of our house. And if you can imagine a large factory or a large industrial setting the box is even bigger and this bakelite was the material behind the various switches, which was an insulating fireproof material but it was made with asbestos.
And when that product was altered it created a dust which electricians and others can breathe. And these are just some of the many, many types of products which we know contained asbestos throughout the course of the last century and exposed many workers to asbestos dust causing them to get mesothelioma.
And there are many more products than this brief list which I’m giving you here today and I’m sure you have many questions about asbestos and the various products that asbestos was used in. I hope you found this article informative and thank you very much for reading.