History of Asbestos Exposure in Delaware
Delaware is home to one of the world’s largest corporate polluters: DuPont Chemical Corporation. Serving industries such as automotive, agricultural, building and construction, electronics, energy, marine, mining and plastics, the company is one of many throughout the United States notorious for exposing workers to asbestos fibers.
Chemical plants such as DuPont blend and manufacture chemicals on a large scale. Although these plants have a significant contribution to the U.S. economy, plants that operated from the 1930s to 1970s likely used asbestos due to its chemical-resistant properties.
Chemical plant workers who may have been put at risk for breathing in asbestos fibers while on the job include (but are not limited to):
- Chemical equipment operators and tenders
- Chemical technicians
- Mixing and blending machine setters, operators and tenders responsible for setting up, operating and/or tending to the equipment that blends the chemicals
- Chemists responsible for studying the various properties of the substances
- Packaging and filling machine operators and tenders
- Workers who maintained and repaired equipment and machinery
Workers may have been exposed to asbestos through various products such as machinery and equipment; building materials; and protective clothing.
Chemical plant workers and DuPont employees are not alone in their asbestos exposure risk. School teachers, construction and demolition workers, and many other Delaware residents and workers were also put at risk for mesothelioma and other asbestos cancers.
Jobsites with Asbestos Exposure Problems in Delaware
Some of the companies that are known to have exposed workers to asbestos include:
- Allied Chemical
- Croda Inc.
- DuPont Chemical
- Helix Associates
- Atlas Chemical Industries
- Dow Chemical
- General Chemical Company
DuPont Chemical, as noted above, has heavily been involved in asbestos exposure in this state. The company built the main DuPont building in Wilmington DE in the early 20th century as well as a nylon plant in Seaford DE in 1939. Both facilities employed hundreds of workers and asbestos was used in the construction of both.
Many lawsuits have been filed against DuPont in the last 30 years for their use of asbestos. There is documented proof that executives knew about the dangers of asbestos many decades ago but they continued to use it without protecting their workers.
Asbestos Litigation in Delaware
The victims of asbestos exposure in this state started to file lawsuits more than 30 years ago. Most of the cases were settled out of court but several major verdicts have resulted.
The first case of note was in 1990 when a jury handed a verdict of $2.5 million to a group of insulators who developed asbestos related diseases in their work at a Texaco oil refinery in Delaware City. The plaintiffs argued that the company was negligent and knew of the dangers of asbestos yet continued to expose the workers to the danger.
For years, the employer of the insulators – Catalytic – did contract work at the oil plant. Some of this work included taking out and installing asbestos insulation. After the jury verdict however, the total judgement was reduced to $627,000. This was to account for settlements that the workers got from other companies that were involved in asbestos containing materials that may have added to their illness issues.
Another Delaware asbestos case involved a mother and son who both died of asbestos cancer after they were exposed to asbestos in their family’s auto repair facility. In 2011, the state supreme court awarded them damages for pain and suffering, which included more than $1 million for the son and $80,000 for the mother. The court also delivered a wrongful death verdict to the four family members who survived – each received $125,000. The plaintiffs developed asbestos cancer from handling brake parts that had asbestos containing materials in them.
Mesothelioma Lawyer Delaware
Cancers caused by asbestos can be extremely debilitating. Although there are mesothelioma treatments, doctors and researchers have yet to find a cure. Symptoms of mesothelioma cancer often don’t become evident until decades after initial exposure and for this reason many victims are diagnosed in the late stages with only a few years left to live.
Mesothelioma attorneys throughout Delaware stand ready to help those whose lives have been turned upside down by asbestos cancer diagnoses. Negligent corporations and other third parties may be held liable for victims’ monetary damages such as medical bills, therapies and treatments, lost ability to work and more. In cases of death, attorneys can help families recover compensation for lost economic and social support as well as funeral and burial costs.
Mesothelioma Statistics in Delaware
From 1999 until 2013, there were 150 mesothelioma deaths and 65 asbestosis deaths in Delaware.
Get the Help You Need
If you or someone you love has been harmed by asbestos, you can get qualified and experienced legal help by contacting mesothelioma treatment centers. We work with a network of top asbestos lawyers throughout the nation and have a history of getting our clients the full amount of compensation they are entitled to. For more information, contact us today.