U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration:
Asbestos Fact Sheet
What is asbestos?
Asbestos is the name given to a group
of naturally occurring minerals used in certain products, such as building
materials and vehicle brakes, to resist heat and corrosion. Asbestos includes
chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, tremolite asbestos, anthophyllite asbestos,
actinolite asbestos, and any of these materials that have been chemically
treated and/or altered.
What are the dangers of asbestos exposure to workers?
inhalation of asbestos fibers by workers can cause serious diseases of the lungs
and other organs that may not appear until years after the exposure has
occurred. For instance, asbestosis can cause a buildup of scar-like tissue in
the lungs and result in loss of lung function that often progresses to
disability and death. Asbestos fibers associated with these health risks are too
small to be seen with the naked eye, and smokers are at higher risk of
developing some asbestos-related diseases.
Are you being exposed to asbestos?Courtesy of U.S.
Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration
employees may be exposed to asbestos during the manufacture of
asbestos-containing products or when performing brake and clutch repairs. In the
construction industry, exposure occurs when workers disturb asbestos-containing
materials during the renovation or demolition of buildings. Employees in the
maritime environment also may be exposed when renovating or demolishing ships
constructed with asbestos-containing materials. In addition, custodial workers
may be exposed through contact with deteriorating asbestos-containing materials