We have previously written about the dangers of second-hand exposure to asbestos. It is already known that people who work with or near asbestos are at risk of developing mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases. But when these deadly fibers attach to a worker's clothing and travel home with him, that worker's family is also at risk of asbestos exposure.
Such cases of mesothelioma from second-hand exposure are more common than you might think. Recently, a woman in the UK filed a lawsuit against her father's former employer for failing to protect workers from asbestos. Although her father died of a brain hemorrhage in 2011, her mother died of mesothelioma in 2014.
According to news sources, the man worked for the defendant company in the 1970s and 1980s. News articles do not specify what the man did for a living, but he regularly came home covered in dust. The plaintiff's attorney explained that “[the father] would greet [the mother] with a hug... remove his dusty clothing and put it in the laundry. As a result of the exposure to asbestos, she suffered injury and death.”
If the mother's exposure was sufficiently high enough to cause mesothelioma, it is conceivable that the father would have eventually been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease as well. In this case, a brain hemorrhage proved to be a more immediate fatal danger.
This case may be from the UK, but it will resonate with many families here in the United States. Losing a parent to a preventable disease is devastating. And when the disease was caused by asbestos exposure in the home, it is frightening to think that you may have also been exposed.
If you or a loved one has developed mesothelioma because of direct or second-hand exposure to asbestos, please contact an experienced mesothelioma attorney to better understand your rights and legal options.