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North Carolina Personal Injury Blog

Asbestos exposure cases can lead to civil and criminal action

Most of the time, when asbestos makes the news, it is in relation to a civil court case. Asbestos is a naturally-occurring mineral that humans have long used to create a broad range of products. Unfortunately, the people who handle, produce or transport those products can wind up sickened from environmental exposure to the deadly carcinogen.

People have sought compensation for asbestos-related illnesses from employers and product producers. Employees can find themselves exposed to dangerous levels of asbestos at work, resulting in a variety of illnesses in later years. Some consumer products, such as talcum powder, have in recent years also been linked to asbestos and certain cancers.

Long timelines make asbestos exposure complicated

We know that asbestos exposure can lead to all manner of health complications, including cancers like mesothelioma, ovarian cancer and lung cancer. These can be fatal. People are careful to limit their exposure to try to stay safe and healthy for years to come.

However, none of this happens overnight. One of the main problems that makes this so complicated is that there are long timelines and delayed results. People may not even realize that they are getting exposed or just how harmful it is at the moment that it is happening.

India resumes testing for asbestos in Johnson & Johnson powder

When a company becomes a household name, like Johnson & Johnson's has with their baby powder, also known as talcum powder, they tend to receive the respect and trust of both consumers and officials. Unfortunately, the respect of officials in positions of legal authority for a brand or company could lead to insufficient or lackluster legal oversight.

Johnson & Johnson is a prime example. Because of how large and well-known the company is, regulators around the world likely trust their product as safe. However, in the face of evidence that the company knew about potential asbestos contamination for decades and did nothing to reduce the risk to consumers or warn them has increased scrutiny of the company and its products.

FDA rejects petition request for improved asbestos reporting

Inadequate government oversight seems to play a significant role in issues related to many workplace safety issues, including asbestos contamination. For years, the government did not take an official stance on asbestos. Eventually, medical science made it clear that prolonged exposure to asbestos could eventually cause serious medical issues, such as the deadly cancer mesothelioma.

That knowledge prompted the government to limit how much exposure a company could permit in employees and resulted in guidelines intended to minimize the health impact of asbestos in the environment and in products. It also gave rise to public awareness about the potential dangers of asbestos in their environment. Unfortunately, very little is known about environmental asbestos exposure.

Agency claims not enough attention paid to asbestos in buildings

Asbestos is a known carcinogen that the government has placed restrictions on for decades. Companies that work with asbestos have to have certain protections in place to limit the amount of exposure their workers experience. Many companies can no longer use asbestos for certain kinds of products as a means of limiting how much asbestos exposure the average person has in their lifetime.

Any exposure is dangerous, as people often inhale particulate asbestos without even realizing it is in the environment. Those fibers build up in the lungs and cause damage, which can lead to lung conditions and cancers many years or even decades after the exposure. Obviously, people want to carefully limit or eliminate their exposure to asbestos for their own future health.

Memos show that Johnson & Johnson knew about asbestos issues

Johnson & Johnson, the monolithic health and beauty company, has long denied the potential for asbestos contamination in their talcum powder products. Marketed as baby powder, this popular Johnson & Johnson product was sold for years to mothers, as well as to adults who wanted to freshen their genitals and avoid dampness in their underwear.

Talc is a naturally occurring mineral, and its deposits in the earth are often quite close to deposits of asbestos. Companies such as Johnson & Johnson should have strict purity and testing standards to prevent potential contamination that could endanger or even kill consumers. Sadly, many companies cut corners in areas that directly impact consumer safety and try to avoid consequences.

Why does asbestos cause cancer?

We certainly know that asbestos exposure can lead to cancer. There's a reason that the use is largely banned, even though it is a terrific insulator. It's just too dangerous. Too many people have passed away after getting exposed to it, at different levels of exposure.

But why does it cause cancer? That's another question entirely, but one it appears researchers are now even closer to answering.

Monsanto will appeal massive Roundup lawsuit verdict

When new products get developed by big companies and researchers, the government must carefully balance the potential benefits of those products with the risks that they pose for consumers. Unfortunately, in some situations, companies have more control over the approval process for new products than they potentially should.

After all, a company that has invested tens of thousands or even millions of dollars in the process of developing a new product likely doesn't relish the idea of losing all that money because the product cannot go to market. Those same companies may finance research into the safety of the products they hope to release.

Wallace & Graham wins $32.7 million mesothelioma verdict - the largest of its kind in North Carolina history

Last month, a federal jury awarded a record-breaking $32.7 million* to the widow of a former tire-plant worker who passed away from mesothelioma. It's the largest single-plaintiff verdict - and the largest mesothelioma-related verdict - in the history of North Carolina. Attorney Bill Graham, a partner at Wallace & Graham, represented the plaintiff.

A cancer warning to all talcum powder users

Generations of Americans have enjoyed the use of talcum powder as a regular part of their personal hygiene practices. Both men and women use it on their bodies to control sweating and provide a sense of freshness. Barbers use it on their customers after a cut and a shave. Mothers use it on their babies to keep their bottoms dry and free of rashes. The problem is recent research reveals that talcum powder could cause cancer.

Why is talcum powder dangerous?

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