Asbestos in the News: Issue 22

Asbestos in the News: Issue 22
At Got Mold? our goal is to keep our followers aware of asbestos related news stories. Each day, we scour the internet looking for relevant information. Here are 24 stories we thought may interest you!
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FEATURED STORIES (5)
The PQ is Right About One Thing — Asbestos Needs to Go: I have not exactly kept it a secret that I disagree with many aspects of the Parti Québécois’ current platform. However, when it comes to the PQ’s policy on asbestos, I couldn’t agree more. If elected, the PQ has stated that it would essentially abolish the asbestos industry in Quebec. All forms of asbestos, including chrysotile asbestos or white asbestos as it is commonly referred to, are proven carcinogens. They cause malignant mesothelioma, lung and laryengeal cancer. This has been known for quite some time; consequently, no other G8 country currently mines and exports this known cancer-causing agent.
PQ promises to end Quebec asbestos industry: The party considered the front-runner in the Quebec election is poised to shut down what’s left of Canada’s asbestos industry, following its lengthy and controversial decline. The Parti Quebecois says it would start by cancelling a $58 million loan, promised by the current Liberal government, to the last fully operational asbestos mine in the country.
How a few minutes of DIY can cost your life years later: Hidden asbestos in homes putting millions at risk from deadly lung disease: Geoffrey Newton had always prided himself on his DIY skills. Even aged 81, he was fitting a new kitchen and bathroom in his home. ‘Over the years he’d done everything from building a boat to converting an old school house into our home,’ says his wife Pat, 82, a former GP. ‘He was brilliant at DIY. Nothing was ever too much of a challenge.’ Unfortunately, it was this passion that most likely led to Mr Newton’s death in May. He was suffering from mesothelioma — cancer of the lining of the lungs — caused by exposure to asbestos. Experts say that even a few hours’ exposure to the toxic fibres can be enough to trigger the condition later in life.
Chinese car maker Chery announces Brazil recall of 12,500 vehicles for asbestos: A Chinese automaker says it’s recalling nearly 12,500 cars sold in Brazil after asbestos was found in engine and exhaust gaskets. Chery International says in an emailed statement that it investigated the asbestos problem after it was discovered about two weeks ago in vehicles sold in Australia. Asbestos is a known carcinogen. A recall of 23,000 cars was made in that nation.
Brazil’s Supreme Court Wraps Up Hearings about Asbestos: In the city of Brasília, over 120 people filled the Brazilian Supreme Federal courtroom. For seven hours, the Court held their final public hearing to review the constitutionality of the state of São Paulo’s law that prohibits the use of asbestos. Carlos Ayres Britto, Chief Justice of the Brazilian Supreme Court, and two other justices listened intently as 18 witnesses presented both written and oral testimony. The witnesses included both experts opposed to asbestos use and representatives of the asbestos industry. ADAO congratulates and thanks everyone who tirelessly worked to expose the lies that the asbestos industry stated in court. Dr. Barry Castleman, Dr. Arthur Frank, and Fernanda Giannasi impressively presented the truth about the horrific consequences of asbestos use. They cogently argued that the exorbitant social and economic cost of asbestos use warrants a ban of all asbestos; asbestos simply should not be produced nor exported. Another exceptional court witness was Doracy Maggion, who contracted asbestosis as a result of working at an Eternit factory in Brazil for about two decades. In a heartbreaking moment, Mr. Maggion explained to the court, “I have two stones for lungs.”
ASBESTOS in SCHOOLS (6)
John F. Kennedy students start term at Rosemount High: Pupils at English public schools across Montreal head back to school Wednesday after the summer break. But students at John F. Kennedy High School in St. Michel will probably have to wait until after the Christmas holidays before returning to their building. Work to remove asbestos fibres from the high school means that about 425 students will start the school year the same way they finished last term – by sharing a building with students at nearby Rosemount High School.
Bay City Academy official: Asbestos problem at school expansion remediated, classes expected to start on time: Renovations to transform the former YMCA building into Bay City Academy’s new elementary school for the upcoming academic year are complete, said Optometrist and entrepreneur Steve Ingersoll, who founded the Academy. Ingersoll said that updating the 59-year-old building was a process faced with numerous construction hurdles, including asbestos abatement. “As in all old buildings, we have a myriad of construction difficulties with asbestos being one of them,” Ingersoll said. “That’s all clear, and we are going to be just fine — the asbestos has been remediated.”
Asbestos a Problem in Dorm at Wofford College Spartanburg: About 200 mostly-freshman students at South Carolina’s Wofford College will be spending their first days of the new semester living at a nearby hotel after water compromised ceiling materials that contain asbestos, prompting concern about exposure to the material. The director of news services at this Spartanburg-area college, Laura Corbin, reports that a moisture issue was discovered about a week ago and it was determined that the water had affected the asbestos-containing ceiling in the 1969-built structure. Corbin told Fox Carolina that in order to contain the asbestos, remove the moisture issue and fix the ceiling’s coating, abatement has begun and should take 2 weeks to complete.
Hale Road Elementary students settle into new classrooms after asbestos problem (with video): Students from Hale Road Elementary in Painesville Township have mixed feelings about their new classroom environment. Kindergarten through third grade students are now attending classes at Painesville Assembly of God in Concord Township for the time being. Meanwhile, fourth- and fifth-grade students have been moved to LaMuth Middle School until their school is cleaned up and ready to go. During summer construction, asbestos was disturbed at the Riverside School District building and needs to be cleared before construction can be completed, and children can enter the building.
Asbestos at Elementary School Cleaned Up after Department of Labor Issues Warning: Just a month ago, the Massachusetts Department of Labor Standards issued a stern written warning to the James F. Peebles Elementary School in Bourne, Massachusetts, ordering the school to clean areas of the building that contained asbestos before students returned from summer vacation. This is the second such warning issued to Peebles in three years, reports an article in The Cape Cod Times. According to the article, in accordance with the request from the Labor Department, a crew of contracted workers has spent a week cleaning the school while others removed tiles and other building materials that contained hazardous asbestos. Air quality testing followed and school officials say the levels of asbestos found in the air were more than acceptable, allowing the building to open in time for the start of school this week.
Bellingham schools must test for asbestos: The state Department of Labor Standards has told Bellingham schools to start testing its buildings for the presence of asbestos, saying the district has not followed its regulations. Under the Asbestos-Containing Materials in School requirements, enacted in 1986, schools have to develop an asbestos-management plan and designate a person trained to handle it. That person must test for asbestos every three years following the plan’s implementation.
ASBESTOS and HEALTH (4)
Asbestos exposure was to blame for death of former railway worker from Littleover: A 71-year-old former railway worker died as a result of an industrial disease, an inquest heard. John Daniels had been diagnosed with mesothelioma, a form of incurable lung cancer which is normally caused by exposure to asbestos fibres which lodge in the lungs, in May last year. Mr Daniels, of Littleover, worked in Crewe between 1958 and 1964 at the loco works for British Rail and it was here that he believed he had been exposed to asbestos. He started as an apprentice fitter and turner in the works, where asbestos was used to insulate the locomotives.
Childhood Exposure to Asbestos Increases Disease Risk Broadly, Including Mesothelioma : Australian researchers offer additional evidence that exposure to asbestos early in life may lead to a variety of serious health issues in addition to mesothelioma and lung cancer. A new study, published in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine, reports that adults who were exposed to crocidolite asbestos in early childhood have an elevated risk of a range of cancers and heart disease. All forms of asbestos cause cancer in humans, according to the World Health Organization. But this is the first study to investigate cancer incidence among adults exposed as children to crocidolite, also known as blue asbestos.
Redditch widow seeks answers to husband’s asbestos-related death: THE devastated widow of a former Longbridge and Land Rover worker who died of an asbestos-related disease has appealed to former colleagues to help her find answers. Jean Clark wants to hear from people who worked alongside her husband Victor in a number of places, including the old car plant in Birmingham, following his death from mesothelioma. The Redditch 66-year-old believes he may have come into contact with the deadly dust at one of the sites.
Inquest into Whitwell man’s asbestos death: AN ELDERLY man from Whitwell died from pneumonia after years of suffering from asbestosis, an inquest heard. Michael Ward, 69, from Butt Hill Close in Whitwell, died at Doncaster Royal Infirmary on 28th July 2012. An inquest at Doncaster Coroner’s Court heard that the retired lorry driver was an engineer in the Royal Navy from 1955 until 1963, where he was likely to have been exposed to asbestos whilst working aboard the HMS Ark Royal R09.
ASBESTOS in PUBLIC BUILDINGS (2)
Asbestos found in Belfast City Council’s operated Pool: Asbestos has been found at a swimming pool being operated by Belfast City Council. Contractors found asbestos during the pool, said a spokesman of Belfast City Council. He was of the view that asbestos was found in an area, which was inaccessible to public, so there was a minimal risk to people.
Asbestos left at kids’ park: A PILE of asbestos dumped illegally in a popular park has put the public at risk and angered Lismore City Council. A family stumbled across 12 sheets of asbestos fencing in Kadina Park’s lower carpark while walking their dog on Wednesday afternoon.
LEGAL ISSUES and ASBESTOS (6)
Hefty fines follow asbestos failings: The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted Hazelwise Ltd and RH Property Management Ltd after finding dozens of damaged asbestos boards stacked up at Brownlow Mill during a visit on 20 October 2010. Manchester Crown Court heard on Friday (24 August 2012) that neither company had put a plan in place to manage the asbestos in the mill on Tennyson Street, where several small businesses rent units.
Two Lincoln companies fined after workers exposed to asbestos at Kettering hospital: Two Lincoln companies have been fined after workers were exposed to asbestos during the refurbishment of a Northamptonshire hospital ward. Contractors Simons Construction Ltd hired Rilmac Insulation Ltd to carry out an asbestos survey for them before work began on Martin Roth ward at St Mary’s Hospital, Kettering. The survey identified an asbestos coating on the underside of the ceilings, but missed over 200 square metres of asbestos insulation board (AIB) above.
Four investigations under way into asbestos exposure: FOUR serious investigations are being carried out after workmen were exposed to potentially deadly asbestos while refurbishing homes and workplaces, the Health and Safety Inspectorate has confirmed. Ten workmen may have inhaled poisonous asbestos, but it could be decades before they develop any health problems, if at all. The health problems related to asbestos exposure range from breathing difficulties to incurable lung cancers, but the most serious cases only develop 15 to 40 years after exposure. All four cases are being investigated and could lead to criminal charges against employers.
New trial order in asbestos case upheld: The Mississippi Supreme Court has let stand an order for a new trial in a workplace asbestos exposure case in which a Jones County man was awarded $15.2 million. The court Thursday denied a request from Troy Lofton to reconsider its June decision.
Prosecutors Ask Stiff Sentences, Fines In SCT Asbestos Case: Prosecutors are asking stiff prison sentences and fines against defendants involved in demolition of the old Standard Coosa Thatcher plant in Ridgedale that resulted in “creating a Superfund site.” Prosecutors Todd Gleason of Washington, D.C., and Matthew Morris of Knoxville are asking Federal Judge Curtis Collier to give a six-level enhancement to the prison terms for Don Fillers, David Wood and James Mathis. The three defendants face up to five years on asbestos charges and Fillers up to 20 years for obstruction of justice.
Rail company pays woman £70,000 in asbestos case: BRITISH Rail has paid £70,000 in compensation to the widow of a former Swindon railway worker who died three years ago from undetected asbestos related cancer. Samuel Dean, who lived in Queensfield with wife Mavis, worked for British Rail for 33 years as a general crane worker and for much of that period was continuously exposed to asbestos. The cranes at British Rail contained boilers which were lagged with white asbestos and which were stripped for repair. Mr Dean also worked in outstations, often sleeping in the guards’ van for weeks at a time. Mr Dean slept only feet away from the stove in the van which was covered with asbestos and crumbling from age and heat.
MISC. (1)
Chery Auto Widens Recall to Six Countries After Asbestos Found: Chery Automobile Co., China’s biggest car exporter, said it will widen a vehicle recall in Australia this month to five more countries after finding potential cancer-causing asbestos parts in some models.
Chery will recall a total of 18,875 vehicles in Brazil, Uruguay, Chile, Argentina and Singapore, according to Huang Huaqiong, a spokesman for the closely held Wuhu, China-based automaker. The carmaker and Great Wall Motor Co. (2333) on Aug. 16 recalled 23,000 vehicles in Australia after customs authorities detected the banned material in engine and exhaust gaskets.

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