Resources for Patients and their Families

Long Island, New York

Long Island is an island in New York State, east of Manhattan. It runs northeast from New York Harbor, between Long Island Sound to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the south. Long Island is made up of four counties - the New York City boroughs of Queens and Brooklyn, along with Nassau and Suffolk counties. In contemporary usage, the name Long Island generally refers only to Nassau and Suffolk counties, as distinct from New York City. Long Island's nearly 7,500,000 residents are divided among widely-varying communities, from the 19th century factories and modern cityscapes of the western boroughs, to the fishing villages, wealthy resort towns and beaches of the east end.

European settlement in Long Island began in the early 17th century, with Dutch settlers establishing themselves in the west, and English Puritans from New England in the east. Through most of the 19th century, Long Island remained rural and agricultural. The Brooklyn Bridge provided the first permanent link to the continental United States in 1883. Railroads, bridges and tunnels made travel between Long Island and New York City faster and easier, and the towns in central Long Island soon became commuter suburbs. After World War II, City planners like Robert Moses and William Levitt developed highways, parks and housing in Nassau County, which was the fastest-growing county in the country between the 1950s and 1970s. Industry was not neglected; Long Island was a prominent aviation center in the 20th century, home to Grumman Aircraft, Republic Aviation and Fairchild Aviation Corporation. Long Island is also known for its research and high-tech facilities. Brookhaven National Laboratory, which opened in 1947 on the site of a former army base, employs nearly 3,000 researchers in nuclear physics, chemistry, environmental sciences and other disciplines. Stony Brook University and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory also conduct medical and scientific research.

Long Island's history encompasses a wide range of industrial and construction activity, making asbestos exposure an ongoing concern. We have identified a number of Long Island jobsites where asbestos exposure has occurred. If you or a loved one were diagnosed with asbestos cancer in Long Island, you should also consider contacting an asbestos attorney.

Asbestos Exposure at Jobsites in Long Island

The Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance has compiled information obtained from a number of sources to identify the following jobsites in Long Island where asbestos exposure was known to have occurred. These sites are listed below.

  • A.C. Horn
  • Astoria Light Heat and Power
  • Breyers Ice Cream
  • Brookhaven National Labs
  • Brookside Utility
  • Cary Insulation
  • Clayburn Contracting Corp
  • Colonial Sand & Stone
  • Columbia University
  • Consolidated Edison Company
  • Elmhurst Hospital
  • First National City Bank
  • Flynn Power Plant
  • Galvin Jerry Inc
  • Grumman Aircraft
  • Holiday Park, Selden
  • JFK International Airport
  • Liquid Carbonic Corporation
  • Long Island City Service Gasoline
  • Long Island Housing Projects
  • Long Island Lighting Company
  • Long Island Powerhouse
  • Long Island Shipyard
  • Mack - International Motor Truck Corp
  • Matthew Balich Corporation
  • Merrick Refuse Disposal
  • National Container Corporation
  • Nusen Shipyard
  • Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church
  • Pepsi Coal Company
  • Polarad Electronics Corporation
  • Shoreham Powerhouse
  • The Van Iderstine Company
  • Tompkin's residence
  • Town of Oyster Bay

Long Island Railroad

Commuter railroads are an important part of the mass transit system of New York City. For those who live outside the city's borders and are reluctant to brave the traffic wars typical of the city's highways and bridges, commuter rail lines offer a convenient and affordable alternative. For residents of Long Island, the Long Island Railroad provides this type of convenient service in and out of several New York City subway stations. The Long Island Railroad services more than 300,000 passengers a day over 700 miles of track and more than a 100 stations. It is an integral component in the daily lives of many Long Islanders, ensuring that they reach their destination quickly and conveniently.

Operating under the auspices of Metro North, which also operates the New York City subway as well as other commuter rail lines, The Long Island railroad is entrenched in the mass transit system of New York, which employs thousands of people to service its stations and tracks. Metro North is a large employer for the region, and its many employees have been exposed to asbestos present in the fixtures and tunnels of these commuter rails. Asbestos was used frequently to insulate water, steam, and electrical fixtures on nearly all older Metro North terminals, including those of the Long Island Railroad. Each day, railroad workers may come in contact with these materials and not even know the hazard they pose. Those employees who work around piping, electrical infrastructure, or other plumbing fixtures are most highly at risk for dangerous asbestos inhalation. Prolonged exposure to asbestos or asbestos containing materials increases the risk of developing harmful respiratory complications like mesothelioma.


The aviation industry is an exciting one and Long Island's history within the field is quite rich. Long Island served as the departure point for Charles Lindberg's trans-Atlantic flight, the first in world history and also served as an important aircraft manufacturing center during the Second World War. Long Island's history in aviation construction is particularly important. Technologically speaking, the region was unparalleled in its construction of advanced Air Force jets and flight systems. With the nation at war, Long Island answered the call for production and work ethic. Employees working within this industry in Long Island were prone to asbestos exposure in many ways.

Aircraft construction is a delicate science. While the physics of flight is certainly testament to this assertion, the construction of aircraft must be flawless for the physics to work properly. This means that all materials used in the construction of aircraft must be extremely resistant to damage and disrepair. Once aircraft leave the ground, their pilots are at the mercy of the materials with which their planes are constructed. Because of this, asbestos was commonly used in aircraft construction. Asbestos has extremely effective insulating qualities, for which it was used to protect the plane against overheating or freezing in its most important components. Asbestos, as we know now, is associated with dangerous health complications and its use was banned in the late 1970's. However, workers who serviced or built aircraft prior to this time, or are now servicing older aircraft may be at risk for exposure to asbestos fibers. Prior exposures can have dramatic health consequences many years down the road. Many people exposed to asbestos have developed a serious respiratory illness called mesothelioma. It is important for those who may have worked in the aviation industry in Long Island to monitor their respiratory health closely, and discuss any abnormal symptoms with their physician.

Power Stations

As New York City was quickly becoming one of the largest metropolitan areas in the world, very little land was available for building infrastructure to support the demands of the city's energy consumption. While Long Island served New York City as a popular day retreat, it also services the city with power from its many power stations. Among the rising technologies throughout the suburban sprawl of Long Island was the use of nuclear power. While nuclear power was being used by the military for defense purposes, channeling that power into residential electricity generation was a popular idea.

Long Island was home to nuclear power plants including the Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant, which generated electricity in a cleaner, cheaper, and less prohibitive way than previous methods of power generation. While nuclear power is generally safe, power generation stations can be extremely dangerous to communities if appropriate safety precautions are not followed. One of the more unfamiliar hazards of nuclear power is exposure to asbestos. Nuclear reactors operate at a higher temperature than any other power plant. These reactors require infrastructure which can contain this heat and channel into turbines, which generate electric current. Nearly all the power infrastructure needs to be completely insulated to guard against potentially devastating meltdowns. Prior to its hazards being widely known, asbestos was used liberally in these facilities. On almost every pipe fixture or electrical unit, asbestos could be found in some capacity. Unfortunately, as older fixtures break down and are repaired, asbestos is often released into the air. Power plant workers who engage with any fixtures could potentially be at risk of dangerous exposure. When inhaled, asbestos can cause a number of respiratory complications, including life-threatening mesothelioma.

Filing an Asbestos Lawsuit in Long Island, New York

Don’t lose your rights! If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma and were exposed to asbestos in New York, you may be entitled to compensation. You may have limited time to file a claim. If you have been diagnosed with mesothelioma and have a pathology report in hand to support that diagnosis, you are eligible for financial assistance.

Asbestos Related News in New York

Mesothelioma Cases Expected to Increase Through 2025

A new report shows the number of malignant mesothelioma cases is expected to rise through at least 2025. Read more at the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.

Beech-Nut Refuses to Pay for Asbestos Clean Up at Former Plant

Beech-Nut says it will not pay for the multimillion-dollar asbestos clean up at its former plant near Albany, New York, despite a federal order. Read more at

Asbestos Exposure Across the U.S.

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