The North Carolina Asbestos Hazard Management Program (AHMP) provides information to the public about the dangers of asbestos and how to control or eliminate exposure. The program is administered by the Health Hazards Control Unit (HHCU), which consists of industrial hygiene professionals who also accredit individuals that perform asbestos management. All individuals performing asbestos management in North Carolina must be accredited by the AHMP and any plans to demolish a building must be reported to the HHCU.
North Carolina governor, Roy Cooper, recently vetoed legislation that would allow landfills to dispose the liquid that leaks from trash by spraying it into the air in a currently untested process called leachate aerosolization. The process was accepted in other states, but Cooper was hesitant to endorse a measure that may pose a safety hazard to people and the environment. Critics of the bill call the spray, "garbage juice," and question whether mold, viruses and asbestos could travel once released into the air.
Military veterans comprise about 30 percent of all mesothelioma victims. The majority of those exposed to asbestos in the military are U.S. Navy personnel. Although the Navy surgeon general issued a report in 1939 explaining the hazards of asbestos, North Carolina residents may be surprised to hear that the Navy shipbuilding industry continued to use asbestos for at least another 40 years.
Exposure to asbestos-containing products may have devastating consequences. If exposed for long periods of time, asbestos-related diseases such as mesothelioma can develop. With no known cure and a lengthy latency period, mesothelioma may claim the lives of those in North Carolina suffering without warning. In those situations, family members of the deceased may file a wrongful death suit to hold responsible parties accountable and receive compensation for medical costs, pain and suffering, loss of income and loss of parental guidance or love and companionship.
Many people in North Carolina own older homes and decide that the time has come to remodel. Others flip houses, a usually profitable endeavor that involves purchasing a house, remodeling it and putting it back on the market within a short period of time. These older houses may present potential improvement or profit, but they may also contain unique hazards like asbestos if they were built before asbestos bans and regulations were enacted.
Residents of North Carolina who have been made ill due to asbestos exposure may be concerned to hear that a bill imposing additional requirements on victims suing for asbestos exposure has just passed the North Carolina House Judiciary Committee. This proposed legislation raises concerns for asbestos victims, who may have a more difficult time obtaining compensation if the bill becomes law.
Over four decades ago, it was established that companies were using asbestos in their products despite their knowledge of its lethal health risks. As more people began to file lawsuits and companies were unable to satisfy their financial liabilities, asbestos trust funds were created.
$81.5 million was the verdict in an asbestos- related death case last week - it was among the largest amounts ever awarded in the state. The award went to the family of a heavy equipment operator who died in 2015 from complications associated with mesothelioma that resulted from asbestos exposure.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control reports that asbestos-related deaths are still occurring at alarming rates. Despite regulations imposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency, asbestos remains a danger to workers in susceptible fields of labor such as construction.