Asbestos in Power Plants is predominantly common because large number of the machinery, tools, protective gear and even the buildings themselves contain asbestos to guard against potential hazards of fire and heat in Power generating facilities. While asbestos was once considered a miracle fiber for its strength, durability, flexibility and lightweight nature, it was widely used in power plants as well as other facilities, but now it turns out that it isn’t quite the marvel we once thought. Rather, it is a deadly carcinogen.
Risks of Asbestos
As asbestos were used on a large scale in Power plants before it started to be regulated, there are chances that it lead to asbestos exposure. Once inhaled, asbestos fibers burrow deep into the lungs, the mesothelium and other membranes and soft tissues in the body. From there, they can become malignant and replicate, forming tumors and quickly spreading. The resulting cancer, which usually targets the lungs but can also affect the stomach and heart, is called mesothelioma.
Power plant workers are among the industrial employees who are at the greatest risk for developing mesothelioma and the other asbestos related diseases because of the substance’s prevalence in their workplaces. Electricians, pipefitters, boilermakers, repairmen and maintenance personnel working in power plants or who have worked previously, all have a higher rate of mesothelioma than the general public does.
Generators and turbines were just two of the types of machines that were most likely lined with asbestos. Boilers, pipes, seal pumps, gaskets and valves also contained asbestos for it’s insulating quality. Even the floors, ceilings and walls of the power plants may contain asbestos material.
Though Asbestos in Power Plants is a significant cause of Mesothelioma and other cancer related diseases, it is still being used, albeit regulated by the government, exposing workers to fatal risks.