As we have discussed in previous posts, asbestos can often be found in building materials, particularly in older homes and office complexes. Often, health problems caused by asbestos occur following an incident that dislodges the toxin, such as damage caused to the building from natural disasters.
Recently, a business owner in Tracy determined that the health issues from which he was suffering could have been caused from asbestos in the building where he leased space to operate his gun store. Due to his poor health, the man had to shut the doors to his shop.
While no natural disaster has been reported that caused the asbestos to become airborne, the man reported that it was likely dislodged during an attempted burglary nearly a decade ago. The individuals attempting to rob the store cut a hole in the roof, in an effort to enter the store. While the robbers were unsuccessful in their attempt, the damage was done.
As a result of the damage to the roof, a water leak developed. According to the business owner, he was not aware of the asbestos until his health began to fail. At that time, environmental tests were completed in the building. The tests concluded that asbestos was contained in the "wallboard, joint taping compound and ceiling tiles."
Doctors had previously been unable to identify the illness resulting in the business owner's symptoms, which included chest pain and problems breathing. After the asbestos was found, doctors discovered nodules on one of the man's lungs.
In this case, although the business owner's landlord had been informed of the water leak following the burglary, no action had been taken to fix the problem during the subsequent 10 years.
Source: Mesothelioma, "Gun Store Owner Says Asbestos Made Him Sick," Pat Gurth, August 14, 2012.