Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma in Indiana
If you have worked and lived in Indiana for significant amount of time, there is a chance that you were exposed to asbestos at home or in the workplace. Prolonged exposure to asbestos can lead to serious health problems including pleural and peritoneal mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer.
As a service to Indiana residents, we have compiled the following information about asbestos and mesothelioma in the state. Below you will find recent statistics about asbestos exposure and mesothelioma. We have also included lists of cities, towns and specific job sites as well as descriptions of the industries where asbestos exposure has occurred in Indiana. Local Indiana mesothelioma doctors and treatment centers are included and recent news articles about asbestos and mesothelioma in Indiana are also provided.
Indiana Mesothelioma and Asbestos Statistics
Indiana residents and visitors could risk exposure to asbestos at work, home, or in publicly accessible buildings.
From 1999-2015, 929 Indiana residents died from mesothelioma
- Indiana has a slightly above average mesothelioma death rate of about 8.6 people per million annually (Source: CDC)
- There are no naturally occurring asbestos deposits known to exist in Indiana (Source: USGS)
- Mesothelioma incidence is a little higher in the northeastern area of Indiana (Source: Journal of the American Medical Association)
Asbestos Exposure in Indiana Workplaces
As a state situated along the Rust Belt region of the U.S., Indiana’s industrial workers may be at a higher risk of asbestos exposure than some other areas of the country.
Gary, IN, and the surrounding area was at one time home to a thriving steel processing industry, with is where about three-fourths of mesothelioma cases in the state originate. Given the high heat associated with smelting, shaping, and processing metals, asbestos was used in many of the machines, protective gear, and other products used in steel plants. Companies like Bethlehem Steel, U.S. Steel, and Gary Steel Works are just a handful of the many places where steelworkers were exposed to asbestos on the job.
The power needed to run steel plants and other industrial concerns is significant, and power plants in Indiana are another significant source of asbestos exposure, given the material’s insulating properties for both heat and electricity. Many Indiana cities had their own local power plants, such as the Frankfort Power House, the Power & Light Company in Indianapolis, and the Fort Wayne Electric Works. Many other power generating facilities throughout the state also led to the exposure of plant workers to asbestos.
Indiana has also been home to oil and gas refineries throughout the state, which contained a high amount of asbestos to prevent or contain fires that might occur in the highly volatile processing environment. R. J. Oil & Refinery Company, Winmar Oil Company, and Countrymark Cooperative LLP all are known to have had workers who developed mesothelioma. Texaco and Shell also have worksites in the state.
While everyone likes to think of hospitals as places where they can be treated and get better from serious illnesses and injuries, Indiana has a high number of hospitals where workers, patients, and visitors may have been exposed to asbestos. These include hospitals such as Protestant Deaconess Hospital in Evansville, St. Elizabeth Hospital in Lafayette, and St. Joseph's Hospital in South Bend, among others.
Asbestos Shipyards in Indiana
Indiana borders the southern tip of the lower half of Lake Michigan, and while there is not much coastline in the state, it does have one notable shipyard where employees could have been exposed to asbestos.
Jeffboat (Jeffersonville Boat & Machine Company)
Opened in 1834 as Howard Shipyards, Jeffboat is now the largest inland shipbuilder in the U.S. Although it is most well-known know for building barges, the shipyard originally made a name for itself as a builder of steamboats. In the years leading up to World War II, the shipyard was bought by the U.S. Navy and renamed to Jeffersonville Boat & Machine Company, where it went on to build hundreds of naval craft like Landing Ship-Tanks (such as those used on D-Day) and submarine chasers, but after the war it became better known for building larger vessels and custom watercraft. Due to the high amount of asbestos used in both commercial and naval ships, many shipbuilders over the years were exposed, with some becoming victims of mesothelioma.
Indiana Cities Where Asbestos Exposure Occurred
Asbestos exposure on the job is known to have occurred in the following Indiana cities. Prolonged asbestos exposure can cause the terminal cancer mesothelioma as well as other asbestos-related diseases. Click on any city below to view a complete list of commercial, military and residential job sites where asbestos exposure occurred in that city.
Asbestos Risks at Smaller Indiana Job Sites
Asbestos exposure is also a problem if you look beyond the major cities and towns in Indiana. Select a town to see the list of its job sites where asbestos exposure occurred. Asbestos exposure at any one of the work sites revealed could put a worker at risk to develop mesothelioma cancer.
Asbestos-Related News in Indiana
The Indiana State Department of Environmental Management is being taken to court over emails about asbestos exposure.
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).
Wikipedia. "Notable People With Mesothelioma."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mesothelioma#Notable_people_with_mesothelioma (accessed 23 August 2010).