For more than a century, Quebec enjoyed the profits of mining, processing and distributing “Canadian Gold” – otherwise known as asbestos. But it wasn’t until more recently that the dangers of handling, breathing and coming into contact with the mineral were made public. Long after corporations knew the substance was making workers sick, they continued to hide the research and put workers at risk because the product was profitable.
Workers and their families all across Quebec were knowingly exposed to a material that could cause lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis. Because certain corporations chose profits before people, you may now be suffering from mesothelioma or may have lost a loved one to the ravages of asbestos exposure.
Because Quebec was the heart of the asbestos mining and production industry, workers and their families located here are the most likely to have developed lung disease as a result of coming into contact with this toxic mineral. When the asbestos mines were at full production, 150,000 tonnes of asbestos were churned out of the Quebec mines each year, exposing workers to lethal amounts of the dangerous substance.
Workers in the Thetford Mines are 10 times more likely to develop lung diseases such as lung cancer, asbestosis, pleural disorders and mesothelioma as any other workers in Canada. And did you know the chances of developing mesothelioma are the highest for the workers – both men and women – in Quebec than anywhere else in Canada?
Which Areas Have the Most Asbestos Diseases?
Mesothelioma and pleural cancer rates are highest in:
- Chaudière-Appalaches Region
- Montérégie Region
- Lanaudiére Region
Asbestosis rates are highest in:
- Chaudière-Appalaches Region
- Lanaudiére Region
- Estrie Region
Which Jobs Have the Highest Asbestos Disease Rates?
It’s important to understand that it’s not only laborers that were exposed to asbestos that can develop mesothelioma. Their families were also put at risk because, for years before any asbestos safety measures were put into place, workers came home covered in asbestos dust that permeated the air in their homes, was breathed in by their children, transferred while hugging and inhaled while work clothes were laundered.
The rates of asbestos disease among workers by job type are:
- 29.1% of those diagnosed with asbestos-caused disease are mine workers
- 28.4% of those who develop lung disease are maintenance and repair workers
- 21% of those diagnosed with asbestos-related illness are construction workers
- 11.3% of those with lung disorders caused by asbestos worked in processing plants
- 10.2% of those diagnosed with asbestos-induced illness were listed as “other workplaces”
It’s important to note that some studies combine the second and third categories – maintenance, repair and construction because these fields are often made of the same workers. This means that nearly half of all asbestos-related cancers strike workers that build, rebuild and repair structures – an even higher risk than those that worked down in the asbestos mines!
How Fast Does Asbestos Related Disease Develop?
Mesothelioma and other lung cancers caused by asbestos take root when you’re first exposed and then slowly damage cells in the lining of your heart, lungs, abdomen or (for men) testicles. Often it’s decades after you were exposed that symptoms grow serious enough to be diagnosed. Once diagnosed, you can live as little as eight months to as long as a few years. Asbestos related illnesses are stealthy and devastating, stealing life away just as many older workers are retiring and ready to enjoy their golden years.
Asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma are diseases striking down older workers who have labored hard for years to support their families. And it’s tragic that it was the hard work you were doing that caused the disease that is now robbing you of your health. This is why it’s important that you contact a mesothelioma lawyer. The parties responsible for stealing your health and retirement years must be made to pay.
Is a General Practice Attorney Capable of Handling Your Case?
The short answer is no. You may have a trusted family lawyer you use for wills or minor legal issues, but this is no time to skimp on expertise. Just as you would not use your family physician to perform open heart surgery, you need an experienced lawyer that specializes in asbestos litigation. Quebec has many lawyers who will happily take on your mesothelioma claim, but Bergman Draper Oslund is unique because mesothelioma cases are all we do. We have years of expertise negotiating valuable settlements for our clients. We have won over $700 million in asbestos related damages for victims and their families. That’s a track record you can count on.
If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, or if you have lost a loved one mesthelioma, contact us today for a free consultation on your rights to a settlement for your loss or illness. Our expertise is yours for the asking. We work for you on contingency, which means there is no fee unless we collect settlements for you, so there’s no risk in calling to discuss your circumstance. Don’t wait another day.