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Neighbors at risk of asbestos exposure after illegal demolition

Despite the limits the government has placed on the use of asbestos in building supplies, the danger remains. Many older homes and structures in South Carolina were built with asbestos-containing materials in their floors, walls, roofs and other places. As long as the materials are undisturbed, there is less danger. However, when the particles are disturbed, for example during a renovation, everyone around is at risk of asbestos exposure.

A demolition company in another state was scheduled to raze an abandoned house known to be full of asbestos on a residential block. In accordance with state and federal laws, an asbestos abatement contractor attempted numerous times to contact the foreman of the demolition project to urgently warn him to wait until they had prepared the house for a safe demolition. The foreman did not respond to the emails but went ahead with the demolition, sending a cloud of toxic particles into the neighborhood.

Additionally, officials reported that the debris remaining at the site after the demolition was obviously filled with asbestos that had not been watered down or contained, allowing it to become airborne. Inhaling or ingesting even a small quantity of asbestos particles can result in deadly lung diseases such as incurable mesothelioma and lung cancer. The demolition company responsible for the hazard is likely facing serious penalties.

The symptoms of mesothelioma may not become obvious for decades after asbestos exposure. However, those signs are painful and frightening. Those in South Carolina facing medical issues related to asbestos may have legal options. Speaking with an attorney is the first step to learning about one's alternatives.

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