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Mesothelioma Help Center - Railroad Workers

Mesothelioma Help Center - Railroad Workers

Did you know?
More than 110,000 schools in the U.S. still contain some form of asbestos.

Welcome to the Mesothelioma Help Center. We have helped many people get experienced legal and medical help for their mesothelioma cancer and asbestos cancer cases. We will actually walk you though the process of contacting an experienced mesothelioma lawyer that we have worked with to get you the best possible settlement for your mesothelioma case.

It is not uncommon for there to be 10-20 parties that are named in a mesothelioma lawsuit that are located across the United States. For example, a worker in California may have been exposed to asbestos from asbestos products shipped from Libby, Montana or from an iron ore plant in St. Paul Minnesota. This is why it is very important to obtain an experienced mesothelioma lawyer knows all of the companies in each state who have responsibility for your asbestos exposure.

We have helped people with mesothelioma cancer for more than five years. The Mesothelioma Help Center is designed to give you quick & simple answers about mesothelioma treatments, asbestos exposure, mesothelioma diagnosis, mesothelioma symptoms, mesothelioma doctors, and we can refer you to an experienced mesothelioma lawyer in who has successfully settled mesothelioma cases.

Did You Know?
Asbestos dust often escaped into the shops and repair facilities where others working in the vicinity were also exposed to asbestos contaminated air.

Many railroad workers have developed asbestos related diseases while working on railroads, steam locomotives, boxcars, diesel trains, fire retardant boilers, fireboxes, steam pipes, refrigerator units, heavy duty tiles for passenger cars, and railroad brakes and clutches. All of these were lined with asbestos. Railroad companies have been held responsible for the illnesses such as Mesothelioma lung cancer, Asbestos lung cancer, and asbestosis.

Railroad Workers - Quick Facts

  • Steam locomotives and some diesels were insulated with asbestos.
  • Railroad brakes and clutches provided another source of contamination.
  • When locomotives were inspected, asbestos insulation was stripped off the boilers.
  • Insulation was used around boxcars and cabooses, refrigeration units, pipes, and steam and hot water lines.
  • Asbestos was also common in packing, rope, cement, gaskets, and in heavy duty floor tiles for passenger cars.
  • Railroad mechanics were routinely exposed to asbestos, as were those who breathed asbestos-laden air nearby.
  • Pipefitters and railroad workers who installed insulation on locomotives, removed it, or inspected it were heavily exposed to asbestos.
  • If you worked in a railroad yard or on the crew of a rail car, you were probably exposed to asbestos.

Railroad Workers at Risk

Rail Yard Engineers, Dinkey Operators, and Hostlers

Rail workers drove switching or small dinkey engines within railroad yards, industrial plants, mines and quarries, and construction projects.

Railroad Conductors

Railroad conductors supervised the activities of freight and passenger trains. Railroad conductors reviewed schedules, switching orders, waybills, and shipping records to obtain loading and unloading information regarding their cargo. Railroad conductors also coordinated activities of their crews and other passenger services.


Yardmasters supervised activities of railroad workers engaged in railroad traffic operations. These activities include breaking up trains and switching inbound or outbound traffic to a specific section of the line. Yardmasters inform engineers where to move the rail cars to fit the planned train configuration.

Railroad Brake, Signal, and Switch Operators

Switch operators perform a variety of duties such as operating track switches to box cars to different tracks of the yard. Switch operators set up warning signals, help with coupling and uncoupling rolling stock to make up or break up trains, or inspect couplings, airhoses, and handbrakes.

Streetcar Operators

Streetcar operators drove electric-powered streetcars, trolleys, or light-rail vehicles that are similar to streetcars that transport passengers in metropolitan areas were also exposed to asbestos from brakes, hoses, boiler, insulation and refrigerated box cars.

Railroad Workers Linked to Asbestos and Mesothelioma Cancer

More than 5,000 asbestos products common contain asbestos. Most of us have been exposed to asbestos Products throughout our lives in small quantities. Workers at highest risk for asbestos exposure are those who have jobs involving prolonged exposure to large quantities of asbestos and asbestos Products.

Asbestos has been used to create thousands of industrial and commercial Products over the years, putting the lives of workers who use and create these Products in jeopardy.

While many uses for asbestos were banned in the mid-1970, the risk from exposure continues today due to mesotheliomas long latency (inactive) period of anywhere between 15-40 years. Today, asbestos continues to be a threat to workers exposed through their occupations and in buildings that were erected prior to the ban.

Asbestos fibers are so toxic, that industrial and trade workers families may be exposed to mesothelioma through particles that cling to the workers clothing, shoes, skin and hair. This type of second-hand exposure to asbestos is known as Para occupational exposure.

Asbestos has played, and in some instances still plays, a key role in the textile, construction, military, refinery, railroad, automotive and shipbuilding industries, affecting thousands of workers throughout the world. If you would like more information on asbestos mesothelioma cancer please visit MesotheliomaLungCancerLawyer.com for more articles, legal and medical information to help you better understand asbestos and mesothelioma lung cancer.

Before you start any work you must make sure you know where all asbestos containing materials are.

The Health and Safety Executive says that the most common uses for asbestos are:

Sprayed asbestos and asbestos loose packaging - generally used as fire breaks in ceiling voids;
Moulded or preformed sprayed coatings and lagging - generally used in thermal insulation of pipes and boilers;
Sprayed asbestos mixed with hydrated asbestos cement - generally used as fire protection in ducts, firebreaks, panels, partitions, soffit boards, ceiling panels and around structural steel work;
Insulating boards used for fire protection, thermal insulation, wall partitions and ducts;
Asbestos cement products which can be compressed into flat or corrugated sheets; corrugated sheets are largely used as roofing and wall cladding; other asbestos cement products include gutters, rainwater pipes, soil stacks and cold water cisterns;
Some reinforced plastics, mastics and sealants;
Millboard, paper and paper products used for the insulation of electrical equipment.
Certain textured coatings, decorative plasters and paints;
Asbestos ropes, gaskets and cloth;

The duty to manage is directed at those who manage non-domestic premises: the people with responsibility for protecting others who work in such premises, or use them in other ways, from the risks to ill-health that exposure to asbestos causes.

It requires the person who has the duty to:

Take reasonable steps to find out if there are materials containing asbestos in non-domestic premises, and if so, its amount, where it is and what condition it is in;
Presume materials contain asbestos unless there is strong evidence that they do not;
Make, and keep up-to-date, a record of the location and condition of the asbestos containing materials - or materials which are presumed to contain asbestos;
Assess the risk of anyone being exposed to fibres from the materials identified;
Prepare a plan that sets out in detail how the risks from these materials will be managed;
Take the necessary steps to put the plan into action;
Periodically review and monitor the plan and the arrangements to act on it so that the plan remains relevant and up-to-date
Provide information on the location and condition of the materials to anyone who is liable to work on or disturb them.

Railroad Workers Linked to Asbestos and Mesothelioma Cancer

Are you in charge?

Surveying for asbestos

If you are in charge or self-employed it is up to you to search the site for asbestos before work begins, or employ a suitably trained person to carry out the survey. If you are employing someone to do the survey for you, make sure they are accredited (www.ukas.com gives information on accredited firms). Remember you can only be 100 percent sure a suspected substance does not contain asbestos after laboratory analysis.

If you find asbestos containing-materials you need to assess the condition of the material and the likelihood of it being disturbed. You will also have to make a record of where the asbestos is located, its type, its form, the amount of it and what sort of condition it is in. This record has to be kept on the premises and available to be viewed at all times. If you are unsure if something contains asbestos, always presume it does until proved otherwise. If the asbestos present is asbestos insulation, asbestos coating or asbestos insulation board, contact an HSE-licensed contractor. The person in charge of the job has to decide if the work needs to be carried out by a specialist, or if those on site can do the work.
Your responsibilities

If you are in charge of a job, you need to know how to deal with asbestos and when you need to call in a specialist licensed contractor. You are responsible for ensuring those working beneath you know the risks and precautions they should take when dealing with asbestos, and know how to use respiratory protective equipment. As the person in charge you have to prevent exposure to asbestos or reduce it to an acceptable level.

When working with asbestos you need to provide clean protective clothing, respirators that fit properly and are in good working order, training on asbestos and instruction on reducing asbestos dust in the air.

If you are responsible for disposing of asbestos waste, it will have to be taken to a licensed tip in accordance with the Hazardous Waste Regulations 2005. Asbestos waste has to be double-bagged in heavy-duty polythene bags and clearly labelled as containing the substance with the label prescribed for asbestos.

Consult safety representatives if you need help in developing measures to ensure the health and safety of your employees.
What do I do if I find asbestos on site?

Although any asbestos-containing materials should have been identified before work begins, there may be some hidden materials on site that are not found until work starts. If you think you have found asbestos, STOP WORK IMMEDIATELY and alert people to its presence. Asbestos is not an easy substance to identify, so presume a material contains asbestos until proven otherwise. A sample needs to be tested by a specialist laboratory to confirm if asbestos is present.

Railroad Workers Linked to Asbestos and Mesothelioma Cancer

Respiratory Protective Equipment

If you are working in a situation where asbestos could be present you should be issued with respiratory protective equipment. Respiratory protective equipment includes facemasks, hoods and helmets worn to protect your lungs from asbestos. The type of respirator you use will depend on the amount of asbestos present and the type of job. Make sure you use the right equipment for the job, or you could expose yourself to asbestos fibres.


If it does not fit, asbestos fibres will enter your lungs and you will be putting your health at serious risk. Your employer (or yourself if self-employed) has to train you how to fit, clean, look after and use respiratory protective equipment properly, and keep this training up-to-date with refresher courses. Tests need to be carried out to make sure that your facemask fits properly (it is an employer's duty to make sure you have a face fit test before using any kind of respirator) as if you have a beard (even stubble), wear glasses or have sideburns, certain types of respirators may not fit adequately. NEVER TAKE OFF YOUR RESPIRATOR IN A CONTAMINATED AREA, the damage asbestos dust causes is irreversible and may cost you your life.

Railroad Workers Linked to Asbestos and Mesothelioma Cancer

How can I protect myself if I am exposed to asbestos?

Along with the use of respirators you can take further action to prevent contact with asbestos fibres:

dampening down asbestos-containing materials can lower the amount of fibres in the air;
use of hand tools over power tools (power tools create more dust, it is not advisable to use them on an asbestos-containing material);
clear up asbestos dust using a 'Type H' vacuum cleaner or damp cloths;
clean up, as you go - don't let asbestos-containing waste build up;
wash your hands and face when you take a break and at the end of work;
don't take home any overalls, worn while you have been in contact with asbestos
put asbestos waste into a suitable sealed container.
Asbestos waste has to be double-bagged in heavy-duty polythene bags and clearly labelled as containing the substance with the label prescribed for asbestos;
don't eat or drink in the work area;
don't smoke.


Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos. Mesothelioma cancer comes from inhaling or digesting asbestos dust particles. Mesothelioma cancer affects the abdominal cavity, chest cavity, and the region surrounding the heart.

Mesothelioma is a life-threatening disease and should not be left untreated. Most cases of mesothelioma begin in the pleura or peritoneum.

Mesothelioma cancer occurs in the mesothelium, a thin layer of tissue that covers your internal organs. The mesothelium is a membrane that covers and protects most of the internal organs of the body. There are two layers of cells in the mesothelium; one layer surrounds the organs; the other layer forms a sac around the organs.

Mesothelioma is most common in the pleura (the outer lining of the lungs and chest cavity), but it may also occur in the peritoneum (the lining of the abdominal cavity) or the pericardium (the sac that surrounds the heart).

Most people who develop mesothelioma have worked on jobs where they inhaled asbestos particles, or they have been exposed to asbestos dust and fibers in other ways, such as by washing clothes of a family member who worked around asbestos.


It has been well documented for many years that asbestos exposure can result in the development of deadly cancers, particularly Mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma has a latency period of 20 to 50 years after the first exposure to asbestos. It is estimated that there will be about 250,000 cases of Mesothelioma before 2020.

There are currently about 3000 new cases of Mesothelioma diagnosed per year, mostly in men over the age of 40.

About 4,000 People die each year from Mesothelioma. During the 20th century, some 30 million tons of asbestos were used in industrial sites, homes, schools, shipyards and commercial buildings in the U. S.

More than 700,000 people have filed claims against more than 6,000 Asbestos companies.

These same companies knew of the dangers for many years before ever warning the public of those risks. It is thought that around eight million people in the United States have been exposed to asbestos over the past half a century, and many more cases - are expected to be reported in the next 25 years.


The National Institute of Health in 1978 estimated that eight to eleven million U.S. workers had been exposed to asbestos by that date. In fact, by 1970, it is estimated that some 25 million tons of asbestos were used in the U.S.
People all over the world have been poisoned by toxic levels of asbestos, putting them at risk for mesothelioma, asbestosis, lung cancer, and other deadly diseases that are directly caused by the inhalation and digesting of asbestos fibers.
Asbestos was used in thousands of products that humans and animals encounter on a daily basis particularly in building components such as ceiling and floor tiles, walls, bricks and stucco, and in automotive parts such as brakes and clutches.
Workers who have mesothelioma have labored for years in jobs that required frequent contact with asbestos. When asbestos is mined, processed, woven, sprayed or otherwise manipulated, its microscopic fibers can be released into the air, where they may be inhaled, initiating the development of mesothelioma.


mesothelioma symptoms include shortness of breath due to pleural effusion (fluid between the lung and the chest wall) or chest wall pain, and general symptoms such as weight loss

Mesothelioma signs and symptoms:

  • abdominal pain
  • bowel function problems
  • chest wall pain
  • weight loss
  • pleural effusion, or fluid surrounding the lung
  • shortness of breath
  • fatigue or anemia
  • wheezing, hoarseness, or cough
  • blood in the sputum (fluid) coughed up (hemoptysis)

Mesothelioma signs and symptoms in severe cases:

  • blood clots in the veins, which may cause thrombophlebitis
  • disseminated intravascular coagulation, a disorder causing severe bleeding in many body organs
  • jaundice, or yellowing of the eyes and skin
  • low blood sugar level
  • pleural effusion
  • pulmonary emboli, or blood clots in the arteries of the lungs
  • severe ascites


Mesothelioma can attack the pleural lining around the lungs. It can also attack the peritoneum, a tissue that surrounds the GI tract. Mesothelioma can attack the stomach lining, other internal organs, or even the pericardium (the tissue sac covering the heart). Thus, mesothelioma can be generally classified into the following types:

  • Pleural — 75% of all mesothelioma cases
  • Peritoneal — 10%-20%
  • Pericardial — 5%

Mesothelioma Types

  • Epithelioid — most common, best survival rate
  • Sarcomatoid — most severe, but more rare
  • Mixed/biphasic — a mixture of epithelioid and sarcomatoid cancer


If you think that you may have been exposed to asbestos at any time, it is important to share your concern with a physician.
Mesothelioma is a very aggressive form of cancer, and one of the reasons that it has such a low survival rate is because it is not typically diagnosed until the disease is fairly advanced.

Diagnosis of Mesothelioma is based on a pathological exam, more commonly referred to as a biopsy. This exam will test a tissue sample for the presence of malignant and/or pleural mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma diagnosis begins with a review of the patient's medical history. A history of exposure to asbestos is a common theme in diagnosing mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma diagnosis is often difficult, because the symptoms are similar to those of a number of other conditions.
Mesothelioma diagnosis includes a physical examination followed by chest X-rays and a CT scan, and confirmed with a biopsy (tissue sample) and microscopic examination.

To diagnose mesothelioma a thoracoscopy (inserting a tube with a camera into the chest) is used to do a biopsy.
Individuals with pleural mesothelioma may accumulate some fluid between the lung lining and chest cavity. This can be detected through a chest x-ray, as well as CT scans.


Treatment for mesothelioma using conventional therapies has not proved successful and patients have a median survival time of 6 - 18 months depending on which stage (1-4) the mesothelioma cancer has progressed.

Treatments for Mesothelioma

Research into new and more effective treatments for mesothelioma is ongoing. There is no cure as yet for mesothelioma. The standard treatments that attempt to hold back the progression of this cancer are:

  • Surgery — to remove part of all of the affected body tissues
  • Radiation therapy — to target and kill the mesothelioma cells
  • Chemotherapy — the use of drugs, injected or taken orally, to kill or stop the growth of the cancer cells

Mesothelioma treatment depends on the location of the cancer, the stage of the disease, and the patient’s age and general health. Standard treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. Sometimes, these treatments are combined.


In February 2004, the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved pemetrexed (brand name Alimta) for treatment of mesothelioma. Pemetrexed is given in combination with cisplatin. Folic acid is also used to reduce the side-effects of pemetrexed.


Unlike lung cancer, there is no association between mesothelioma and smoking.
Smoking does not appear to increase the risk of mesothelioma. However, the combination of smoking and asbestos exposure significantly increases a person’s risk of developing cancer of the lungs.

The Kent brand of cigarettes used asbestos in its filters for the first few years of production in the 1950s and some cases of mesothelioma have resulted. Smoking modern cigarettes does not appear to increase the risk of mesothelioma.
The combination of smoking and asbestos exposure significantly increases a person's risk of developing cancer of the airways (lung cancer, bronchial carcinoma).
If you do smoke, stop. In addition to mesothelioma and asbestosis, there is research that indicates that those who suffer from asbestos exposure and smoke are at a greatly increased risk of developing mesothelioma lung cancer.


Mesothelioma symptoms may not appear until 20 to 50 years after exposure to asbestos.
Mesothelioma occurs more often in men than in women and risk increases with age, but this disease can appear in either men or women at any age.
Working with asbestos is the major risk factor for mesothelioma. A history of asbestos exposure in the workplace is reported in about 70 percent to 80 percent of all cases.

Mesothelioma will cause shortness of breath, cough, and pain in the chest due to an accumulation of fluid in the pleural space.
Mesothelioma does not usually spread to the bone, brain, or adrenal glands. Pleural mesothelioma tumors are usually found only on one side of the lungs.
Family members and others living with asbestos workers have an increased risk of developing mesothelioma, and possibly other asbestos related diseases.
Early Mesothelioma screening tests can diagnose mesothelioma earlier than conventional methods thus improving the survival prospects for patients.

Mesothelioma is described as localized if the cancer is found only on the membrane surface where it originated.

Mesothelioma is classified as advanced if it has spread beyond the original membrane surface to other parts of the body, such as the lymph nodes, lungs, chest wall, or abdominal organs.

Mesothelioma death rates increased from 1980 to the late 1990s, the death rate from mesothelioma in the USA increased from 2,000 per year to 3,000, with men four times more likely to acquire it than women.
Working with asbestos is the major risk factor for mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is now known to occur in those who are genetically pre-disposed to it.
Mesothelioma has been reported in some individuals without any known exposure to asbestos.
Most doctors and medical experts agree that there will be tens of thousands of new cases of mesothelioma in the years to come.
Many building materials used in both public and domestic premises prior to the banning of asbestos may still contain asbestos.
Incidence of mesothelioma had been found to be higher in populations living near naturally occurring asbestos.
Asbestos has been mined and used commercially since the late 1800s. It was used widely used during World War II.
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets limits for acceptable levels of asbestos exposure in the workplace.
There is some evidence that family members and others living with asbestos workers have an increased risk of developing mesothelioma, and possibly other asbestos-related diseases.
Occupations that have high rates of exposure include ship builders, oil refinery workers, steel workers, power plant workers, Navy shipyards, pipefitters, auto workers, railroad workers and construction workers.
If you are a grieving family member or executor of the will of a person who has died from asbestos-related disease or mesothelioma, you may be eligible to file a claim as well.
For those diagnosed with mesothelioma it is very important to consult with an experienced mesothelioma lawyer. In most cases there are funds available for your treatment and personal suffering. Please feel free to contact us at any time at 1-800.291.0963


The first lawsuits against asbestos manufacturers were in 1929. Since then, many lawsuits have been filed against asbestos manufacturers and employers, for neglecting to implement safety measures after the links between asbestos, asbestosis, and mesothelioma became known (some reports seem to place this as early as 1898).
A good Mesothelioma attorney understands the unique complexities involved in this kind of litigation lawsuit, including asbestos product identification, specific asbestos-related medical issues, and specific time constraints that narrow the window of opportunity to file a claim.
It is important to find the right Mesothelioma lawyer before your state’s statutes of limitations expires, leaving you and your family grieving and empty-handed. There's no time to wait - contact our mesothelioma lawyers today for a free case review.
We have helped many people get experienced legal and medical help for their mesothelioma cancer and asbestos cancer cases. We will actually walk you though the process of contacting an experienced mesothelioma lawyer that we have worked with to get you the best possible settlement for your mesothelioma case.

It is not uncommon for there to be 10-20 parties that are named in a mesothelioma lawsuit that are located across the United States. For example, a worker in California may have been exposed to asbestos from asbestos products shipped from Libby, Montana or from an iron ore plant in St. Paul Minnesota. This is why it is very important to obtain an experienced mesothelioma lawyer knows all of the companies in each state who have responsibility for your asbestos exposure.

We have helped people with mesothelioma cancer for more than five years on the Internet. TheMesothelioma Help Center is designed to give you quick & simple answers about mesothelioma treatments, asbestos exposure, mesothelioma diagnosis, mesothelioma symptoms, mesothelioma doctors, and we can refer you to an experienced mesothelioma lawyer in who has successfully settled mesothelioma cases.

Mesothelioma Asbestos


There are three most commonly used types of asbestos: white, brown, and blue. Brown and blue asbestos are most commonly associated with mesothelioma.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that has been used for centuries in various products. Asbestos has many attributes that make it valuable, including fire resistance.

Asbestos was used in many products that were made for protection from heat and flame. This included actual clothing, such as gloves, to stuffing asbestos insulation into electrical conduit, to using asbestos to make fire proof cloth for use in power plants or petroleum refineries.

Asbestos also has excellent insulation and noise deadening qualities. This meant that asbestos was used in many construction products, including floor and ceiling tiles and wall board. Any home built before 1978 probably contains asbestos somewhere.

Asbestos exposure occurs when the asbestos that is in the products becomes damaged. Once damaged, the asbestos fibers are released into the air. The fibers are microscopic, smaller even than a grain of pollen, and invisible to the naked eye. The asbestos fibers, if inhaled or ingested, can become lodged into the body where it can create severe medical problems.

We help with you file Mesothelioma and Asbestos-related claims in each state

Call us toll free at 800.291.0963 or use quick contact form located at the right of this page and we will contact you within 24 hours.

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Mesothelioma Symptoms

The most common Mesothelioma symptoms are the following:

Recent onset of shortness of breath (31%)
Recent increase in shortness of breath (30%)
Chest pain (43%)
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