The attorneys at Lipsitz and Ponterio have represented numerous boilermakers who have been diagnosed with mesothelioma. Massive exposure to asbestos occurred when boilermakers installed, maintained and removed residential and industrial boilers. Prior to the late 1970’s, asbestos was used on boilers because it served as a good insulating and fire resistant material.
In communities like Buffalo, New York, numerous households contained residential boilers known as a round series boiler. Up until the early 1960’s, a round series residential boiler was often covered in inch thick asbestos shorts. Once the boiler was pieced together and installed in a residence, it then required the application of the asbestos shorts. This process often involved mixing over 250 pounds of raw asbestos fiber with water, and then applying it to the boiler surface as an insulation material. Pursuant to manufacturers’ recommendations, these boilers not only required the use of asbestos insulation, but also required that the insulation be applied at the residence where the boiler was installed. This not only put boilermakers at risk for exposure to harmful asbestos fibers, but it put those who lived in the house where work was conducted at risk as well.
Residential boilermakers also installed sectional boilers that utilized asbestos rope and cement between sections. The most extensive form of asbestos exposure took place during tear-out of old residential boilers. Because residential boilers were most commonly located in the basement of a house, boilermakers quite often used a claw hammer or sledge hammer to reduce the boiler to rubble for easier removal. As both round series and sectional boilers were covered with asbestos insulation, this process created a tremendous amount of asbestos dust and fibers to be released into the air.
Regular maintenance of boilers also caused asbestos exposure as repairs frequently required disturbance of the insulation. Once repairs were made, asbestos furnace cement was used to patch the hole. After its application, the asbestos cement was sanded releasing asbestos dust into the air. Manufactures of the residential boilers included: American Standard, Burnham, Crane Company, Dunkirk Boilers, General Electric, Kohler Company, Peerless, Sears, Hydrotherm, U.S. Radiator, and Weil-McLain.
Lipsitz and Ponterio also represents numerous tradesmen who are members of the International Union for Boilermakers. These individuals worked at large powerhouses throughout Upstate, New York, including Niagara Mohawk and New York State Electric & Gas (NYSEG). Our clients routinely worked at these sites during large shut-downs. The manufacturers of industrial boilers included Babcock and Wilcox, Combustion Engineering, Riley Stoker, and Erie City.
In the process of representing boilermakers and their families, our attorneys have gathered numerous medical and liability documents that could be instrumental in your legal representation. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, contact us regarding your legal rights.