Arizona is home to more than a hundred naturally occurring asbestos sites. The majority of these are of chrysotile asbestos, one of the forms of asbestos fibers proven to be extremely hazardous to health.
Mining in Arizona ended in the early 1980's, at about the same time that asbestos was banned throughout the entire country. However, despite the closing of these mines, cases of Arizona mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases have continued to be reported.
From 1980 until 2000, around 200 cases of asbestosis and 473 cases of mesothelioma were reported. Arizona mesothelioma cases have continued to be reported with numbers escalating each year. This can be explained by the fact that this type of disease takes decades to manifest (usually around 20 to 40 years after initial exposure.) There have been no statistics of Arizona mesothelioma cases before the 1980's when asbestos mining was liberally done throughout the state. It is believed that more and more mesothelioma and asbestosis cases will come out in the near future.
Today, there continues to be locations and occupations in the state of Arizona that are at high risk for asbestos exposure. In the areas of Tucson, Yuma and Scottsdale, there are seven large power plants and three copper smelting industries that utilized large amounts of asbestos before its use was banned. There are also numerous mills, construction sites and factories that once used asbestos and whose facilities have since undergone renovations and demolitions - a major culprit in the releasing of asbestos fibers.
What are the legal rights of an Arizona mesothelioma victim? Generally, the state provides a 2-year statute of limitations when filing a case against an employer. However, Arizona mesothelioma and other asbestos exposure related victims are not restricted to the state courts. A multi-billion dollar trust fund has been established by former asbestos companies for the purpose of compensating those suffering from these diseases. Today, many Arizona mesothelioma claims are filed through the federal court.
If you were possibly exposed to asbestos in the past and are currently experiencing chest pains, breathing difficulties, and other related respiratory problems, it is best that you talk to your physician immediately. With the help of a series of tests, your doctor can confirm whether you have contracted any asbestos exposure-related disease. The earlier you get diagnosed, the better chances and options you will have for cancer treatment.
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