Those who spent a lot of time in the air or worked on aircraft face a high risk of asbestos exposure and related illnesses.
Asbestos can have many useful applications. Asbestos is naturally flame retardant, is electrically nonconductive, and is a good insulator. Combined with other materials and shaped in endless permutations, asbestos was one of the staple building materials of the 20th century.
We now know that exposure to asbestos can cause devastating health consequences. This revelation is not entirely new; there are written records from thousands of years ago indicating that observers noticed lung problems in servants who had been tasked with making garments out of asbestos. But, the full effects of asbestos exposure were not understood until relatively recently, and during much of the 20th century, with wartime fears at the forefront of the American psyche, potential asbestos-related health concerns took a backseat.
Times have changed though, and many American servicemen and women are now paying the price for a lack of precaution and forethought when it came to military applications of asbestos. This is particularly true for many Air Force veterans who faced a high risk of asbestos exposure.
The unique properties of asbestos made it appear to be an ideal material in certain aircraft components. An aircraft is full of combustible fuel and moving parts that can generate heat, to say nothing of the potential for enemy fire. Heat shields, valves, gaskets and various types of insulation in aircraft are often coated with asbestos, and may even be made entirely of asbestos.
Obviously there is the potential to come in contact with asbestos when spending time aboard an aircraft with such components. But, even Air Force veterans who did not spend a great deal of time in the air can be at risk of suffering long term health consequences due to asbestos exposure. For instance, aircraft mechanics are particularly likely to have been exposed to asbestos while working with aircraft brake linings, which were historically manufactured using asbestos.
Exposure to asbestos can lead to mesothelioma, other types of cancer and lung tissue scaring that makes breathing difficult. For Air Force veterans who suffered health consequences as a result of service-related asbestos exposure, compensation may be available through the Veterans Administration and/or a third-party claim against a nonmilitary entity that was responsible for creating asbestos exposure risk.
If you or someone you love was exposed to asbestos in the Air Force, Wallace & Graham, P.A. can help. Contact Wallace & Graham, P.A. to ensure you get the full, fair compensation you deserve.
Keywords: asbestos, Air Force, exposure