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Contractors put apartment residents at risk for asbestos exposure

Asbestos is a toxic substance that causes severe ill health effects in humans. However, its deadly nature was not always common knowledge, and it used to be a commonly used substance for insulating buildings. Now that the effects of asbestos exposure are well understood, building owners, construction crews and others must be vigilant in preventing unnecessary risks South Carolina residents.

Residents of an out-of-state apartment complex were exposed to asbestos during renovations. Apparently, the contracting company hired to perform those renovations did not ensure that safety protocols were followed, which likely exposed all 12 units in the building to airborne asbestos dust. At one point, the contractors left asbestos-laden debris in the building's hallway, and residents were forced to pass the debris when using the side door.

At some point local officials became aware of the problem and warned the building's management team to comply with current safety standards. After management failed to do so, the fire department removed residents from the premises and decontaminated them. It is unclear how the residents' belongings -- including their vehicles -- will be handled to prevent further spread of asbestos.

Although asbestos is most well-known for its mesothelioma and lung cancer causing abilities, it can also cause additional breathing issues. A friend of one of the residents reported that her friend's health issues recently worsened. Her asthma allegedly got so bad that she required care in the emergency room several times over the past months.

No one wants to learn that their health has been compromised because a company or contractor failed to implement necessary safety protocols. Unfortunately, this is the reality that South Carolina residents dealing with asbestos exposure must face. Although compensation cannot undo any harm, successfully navigated civil suits can achieve just recourse for medical bills and ongoing pain and suffering.

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