Kenmore Mercy Hospital was established in 1951 by the Sisters of Mercy, a Roman Catholic religious order. Located on Elmwood Avenue in Kenmore, New York, the hospital has 184 inpatient beds, and it offers emergency care, orthopedics and cardiology services. Kenmore Mercy Hospital is also one of the six designated stroke centers for Erie and Wyoming Counties. Since the 1950’s, Kenmore Mercy has completed several expansions and renovations in order to keep up with increased demand for its services.
Up until the late 1970s and during construction and renovation procedures at Kenmore Mercy Hospital, workers utilized dozens of asbestos-containing materials. Fireproof insulation, pipe covering, insulating cement and block insulation covered pipes, boilers and associated equipment throughout the hospital. Exposure to asbestos can cause mesothelioma, lung cancer or other asbestos related diseases.
Workers applied fireproof insulation to the structural steel throughout the hospital in order to protect it from potential fire damage. Fireproofing material was manufactured as a dry mixture of asbestos, cement and linen, and it was packaged in heavy paper bags. The insulation material was dumped into a machine, mixed with water and sprayed onto the structural steel with a hose. The fireproofing application process produced clouds of asbestos-containing dust and fibers, which workers inhaled. Additionally, tradesmen, such as carpenters, plumbers and electricians, disturbed the fireproofing in order to install framing studs or electrical conduits. Most workers were completely unaware of the dangers of exposure to asbestos dust, and they performed their work without masks or protective gear.
Additionally, Kenmore Mercy Hospital’s heating system included steam boilers and an extensive system of pipes and radiators. In order to maintain a steady internal temperature in the heating system, boilers, pipes and valves were insulated with asbestos-containing materials, such as pipe covering, insulating cement and block insulation. During maintenance and repair procedures, asbestos-containing materials were removed in order to make repairs within the heating system. When maintenance or repair procedures were complete, workers applied new asbestos insulation. Removing and applying asbestos-containing insulating materials caused asbestos fibers and dust to become airborne.
Many union and non-union laborers who worked on construction projects for Kenmore Mercy Hospital were employed by various contractors throughout Western New York. If you or a loved one were once employed in connection with the construction of Kenmore Mercy Hospital and have been diagnosed with mesothelioma or lung cancer, please contact us regarding your legal rights.