Asbestos Exposure

Posted on Tuesday, March 22nd, 2016 at 12:17 pm    

There are four main types of asbestos exposure. These are:

  1. Primary exposure;
  2. Secondary exposure;
  3. Environmental exposure; and
  4. Natural occurring asbestos exposure

All types of prolonged asbestos exposure are harmful to one’s health. Thus it is wise to have preventative measures in place. Asbestos becomes a health hazard when the asbestos fibers are disturbed in some way. The disturbance loosens the fibers and allows them to be lifted into the air. Because of their tiny size, the fibers can be inhaled into the body. Once inhaled and lodged, the fibers scar the areas they have lodged into. This causes various health problems like mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer and respiratory problems.

Asbestos exposure from disturbed asbestos roofing

Asbestos exposure from disturbed asbestos roofing

Primary exposure

Primary exposure is being directly exposed to asbestos fibers from the source of the asbestos. This can be through the work environment or living environment. The work environment can cause exposure, due to working with asbestos and/or asbestos products or generally having asbestos in the work area e.g. boilers, ships, submarines etc. were lined with asbestos. Many homes built before 1980 have asbestos in the flooring, ceiling, insulation and cementing. Asbestos exposure may occur during demolition, repair, building or home maintenance and/or remodeling.

Secondary exposure

Secondary exposure is whereby people who have direct contact to airborne asbestos fibers, transport these fibers to others. The other name for secondary exposure is take home exposure. The common way to transport the fibers is through clothes and in hair. Most workers who were exposed to asbestos transported the fibers home to their families. To the human eye the particles look like dust. The asbestos fibers would be lodged in sofas, carpets and in the air. Most people exposed are family members living with an asbestos exposed worker.

Environmental exposure

This type of exposure is common in towns in close proximity to asbestos mines. Most mining towns are designed to have close access to the actual mine. Because of the residential and commercial proximity to the mines residents are exposed to asbestos particles already floating in the air. The particles are airborne due to the disturbance of the mining taking place.

Natural occurring asbestos exposure

In some places like El Dorado Hills, California; asbestos occurs naturally in the soil and in rocks. This increases the chances of asbestos exposure once fibers are disturbed. In these areas routine activities can cause disturbance to the asbestos fibers. For example:

  • Gardening
  • Digging or shoveling dirt/soil
  • Running, hiking and/or playing on unpaved surfaces
  • Riding bikes and/or driving on unpaved surfaces


Despite what form of exposure you or your loved one had, we at Vinson Law can assist you with your claim thereby helping with medical expenses related to asbestos exposure including loss of income.

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