Colt Industries was a manufacturer of steel products that was bought out by the Crucible Materials Corporation in 1985. Crucible Materials was founded in 1876 in Syracuse, New York and was responsible for creating the first electric arc furnace in the United States.
LIke so many other steel mills, this Syracuse based facility utilized products that were made out of asbestos, a mineral that was discovered in large natural deposits in America during the 1800's. When it was first found, asbestos was thought to be a miracle material that could be used to make almost any product imaginable. Although the mineral is very tough, it can be molded into most any shape and size. It is also strong, durable and able to hold together under intense heat and even help stop the spread of a small fire. This made it ideal for use in commodities like the large equipment that are required at every steel mill.
In addition to all its positive qualities, asbestos has a very serious problem that most people weren't aware of until the later 1970's. The mineral is poisonous, and can be very harmful or even deadly to people who spend time around it. When asbestos is incorporated into items like insulation it makes a heavy duty product, but small dust particles do often break off and become airborne. Workers who spend time around the large machines that are kept running smoothly with asbestos based insulation breathe this dust in on a regular basis.
When asbestos gets into the human body, it releases poison into the respiratory system. The toxic substances can cause a wide array of internal damage, such as decaying healthy lung tissue, causing breathing disorders and eventually developing into mesothelioma cancer. Exposure to the hazardous mineral often results in asbestosis and mesothelioma, two incurable illnesses that are difficult to treat. Millions of Americans have been afflicted with these sicknesses, and many have lost their lives. If you or someone you know once worked for Crucible Materials, notify the doctor about the risk you faced while on the clock.
Today Crucible Materials is a major player in the steel industry. The Corporation has branches all over the world that produce a variety of goods in an asbestos free environment.