280 people were killed in September when a 7.1 magnitude earthquake hit Central Mexico. Although the initial threat has passed, millions of survivors and rescuers now face an uncertain future after being exposed to asbestos, the silent killer.
The earthquake engulfed Mexico City, Puebla and parts of Morelos, Guerrero and Oaxaca in dust and debris. Among the rubble was concrete, crystalline silica, battery acid, ammonia, fungal spores, toxic chemicals and asbestos.
Mexico continues to allow the use of asbestos
Unlike the UK, which banned the use of asbestos in 1999, Mexico continues to allow it to be used in controlled measures to mix concrete. Asbestos is very dangerous when it is airborne. As concrete was turned to rubble there is a high likelihood that asbestos fibres were in the air as rescuers and survivors picked through the debris looking for signs of life.
Many of the people on the scene wore masks over their faces. Unfortunately, this would not have stopped them from inhaling potentially harmful asbestos fibres.
Sadly, people now face an agonising wait of up to 50 years before knowing if they have been affected by:
How can we help?
If you require help making an asbestos claim for mesothelioma or other asbestos disease then please contact us today. You can do so by calling our Freephone number on 0800 038 6767. Alternatively, you can head over to our ‘contact us’ page and complete the form. A member of our team will be in touch shortly.