Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure in Idaho
If you live in the state of Idaho and have worked there for significant amount of time, there is a chance that you were exposed to asbestos in the workplace. Prolonged exposure to asbestos can lead to serious health problems including mesothelioma, asbestos-related lung cancer and other non-malignant lung impairments.
To assist people who live in Idaho, we have provided statistics about asbestos and mesothelioma in Idaho. We have also included descriptions of the industries and lists of cities, towns and specific job sites in Idaho where asbestos exposure is likely to have occurred. Treatment options and recent news about asbestos and mesothelioma in Idaho are also provided.
Idaho Mesothelioma and Asbestos Statistics
Idaho residents and visitors could risk exposure to asbestos at work, home, or in publicly accessible buildings.
From 1999-2015, 212 Idaho residents died from mesothelioma
- Idaho has an average mesothelioma death rate of about 8.4 people per million annually (Source: CDC)
- There are 8 naturally occurring asbestos deposits known to exist in Idaho (Source: USGS)
- Mesothelioma incidence is a little higher in the northernmost counties of Idaho than elsewhere in the state (Source: Journal of the American Medical Association)
Asbestos Exposure in Idaho Workplaces
With its strong agricultural and industrial history, Idaho workers have a strong chance of encountering asbestos throughout their lifetimes.
Although known primarily for its potatoes, Idaho is also home to a number of other agricultural concerns. Some of these farms and facilities have been known to expose their employees to asbestos through the use of agricultural fillers and other asbestos-containing materials. Some such jobsites were operated by the Utah-Idaho Sugar Company, Amalgamated Sugar Company, and Carnation Milk Products Company. Asbestos was heavily used in parts of agricultural machines, food transportation vehicles, and food processing plants.
At one time, the U.S. Department of Energy maintained the Idaho National Laboratory as a research facility for nuclear energy, and the state’s history with atomic power has led to much of what people know today about this form of alternative energy. Given the high amount of heat and electricity produced at a nuclear plant, large amounts of asbestos have been used as an insulator against both. Companies like the A.E.C. Atomic Plant in Idaho Falls, U.S. Atomic Energy Corporation in Arco, and the Westinghouse Idaho Nuclear Company in Scoville, among others, are all known to have exposed their workers to the dangers of asbestos.
Although not its largest industry, steel production is another way that many people in Idaho have been exposed to asbestos. Western Steel, Bunker Hill Smelter and Gate City Steel are all locations where steelworkers have experienced asbestos exposure as a part of their daily lives.
Lumber and Paper:
With large swaths of forest, Idaho has contributed to the nation’s lumber and paper industries. The Potlatch Corporation’s forest near Lewiston is just one of a number of sites where employees and visitors were known to have experienced asbestos exposure. Other such sites include the Boise Cascade Paper Mill and the Pulp Mill Warehouse.
Asbestos Superfund Sites in Idaho
Idaho is not home to any shipyards, but there is at least one location on the EPA’s Superfund list that has required cleanup due to the presence of asbestos and other hazardous materials. Other locations have also put people at risk of asbestos exposure throughout the state.
ARRCOM (Drexler Enterprises)
A one-acre plot of land about three miles outside of Rathdrum, Idaho, this waste oil recycling facility site was operated from about 1960 until it was abandoned in the early 1980s. While the EPA’s primary concern at the facility was the oil sludge and solvents used as part of the recycling process, it also became clear during the cleanup that there was a significant asbestos hazard at the site. Workers, and later cleanup specialists, were exposed to asbestos in the machinery and oil containers, which was used to prevent or contain any fires that might break out at the plant.
Asbestos Exposure at Idaho Job Sites
Asbestos exposure has occurred in the major cities and towns of Idaho. Select a town to see the list of its work sites where asbestos exposure occurred. Asbestos exposure at any one of the sites revealed could put a worker at risk to develop pleural mesothelioma.
Asbestos-Related News in Idaho
The Grapevine addiction recovery group in Boise, Idaho, might be out of a meeting place after asbestos was found in the old firehouse the organization rents.
Author: Linda Molinari
Editor in Chief, Mesothelioma Cancer AllianceRead about Linda
Reviewer: Jennifer R. Lucarelli
Lawyer for Mesothelioma Victims and Their FamiliesRead about Jennifer
Geological Research, Analyses and Services Programs. “Naturally Occurring Asbestos Locations in the Contiguous U.S. and Alaska.” Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 25 May 2007.
http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/noa/usamap.pdf (accessed 23 August 2010).
Nolan, Armina. “EPA Takes Over Asbestos Inspections in Idaho.” Environmental Protection Agency, 19 November 1997.