Mesothelioma and Asbestos Exposure in Missouri
If you have worked and lived in Missouri 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 people who live in Missouri, we have compiled the following information about asbestos and mesothelioma in Missouri. Below you will find recent statistics about asbestos exposure and mesothelioma in Missouri. We have also included descriptions of the industries and lists of cities, towns and specific job sites in Missouri where workers were exposed to asbestos. Local mesothelioma doctors and treatment centers are listed and recent news articles about asbestos and mesothelioma in Missouri are also provided.
Missouri Mesothelioma and Asbestos Statistics
From 1999-2015, 748 Missouri residents died from mesothelioma
- Missouri has a mesothelioma mortality rate slightly below the national average, about 7.5 people per million annually (Source: CDC)
- St. Louis County suffers the most asbestos-related deaths in the state, with an estimated 835 deaths from mesothelioma, asbestosis or other diseases between 1999 and 2013 (Source: CDC)
- Missouri has four known asbestos occurrences, 2 of which were former mines known to contain some asbestos and 2 natural deposits in the Ozark Mountain region (Source: USGS)
Asbestos Use Across Missouri Industries
In addition to the natural asbestos deposits in St. Francois and Iron counties, industries throughout the state put workers at risk with their use of asbestos-containing materials and products.
Missouri was home to several manufacturers that produced asbestos-containing materials. GAF Corporation, later known as Ruberoid, operated a plant in Saint Louis that produced asbestos roofing materials. These products put workers in the plant, as well as construction workers and consumers, at risk of exposure. Another large asbestos product manufacturer, CertainTeed, had a plant based near GAF and produced asbestos-cement pipe. Though this plant closed in 1979, both asbestos manufacturers improperly disposed of their hazardous asbestos waste along the Maline Creek shoreline. Some cleanup efforts by local government have occurred, but a lot of the asbestos waste remains there today.
Various automotive parts, like brake linings, still use some amount of asbestos today, putting mechanics and workers in vehicle assembly plants at an increased risk of exposure to the toxin. The Mack Truck assembly plant in Joplin is known to have used several asbestos-containing parts that workers often handled, including gaskets and brake linings.
Several operating mines in Missouri found known asbestos occurrences. An unnamed prospect in the Mark Twain National Forest, as well as a manganese mine in Winona and copper mine in Astoria all had documented natural asbestos. Though the miners weren’t specifically looking for asbestos, these activities could have potentially disturbed the existing deposits and make the dangerous fibers become airborne.
Some large brewing companies have operations that date back for centuries, and unfortunately used asbestos in the building of their facilities and equipment. Any workers called in for maintenance, as well as the brewers, were at risk. Columbia, Empire, and M.K. Goetze brewing companies all have known use of asbestos.
Asbestos Superfund Sites in Missouri
Two sites in Missouri were added to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Superfund List because of asbestos waste and other environmental concerns. The Maline Creek area was also considered for the list after many investigations over the years. Various cleanup efforts by local agencies took place over the years, and were considered finished in 2001.
Lake City Army Ammunition Plant
The Lake City Army Ammunition Plant occupies nearly 4,000 acres of land in Independence. The site has been used for various industrial operations, including manufacturing and testing ammunition, since 1941. Over decades of use, hazardous wastes have built up on the site and contaminated the soil and groundwater. In their initial investigation, the EPA noted asbestos siding, construction debris, metals, PCBs and other toxic waste around the property. The site was added to the Superfund List in 1989, and underwent extensive long-term cleaning efforts. As of 2009, the site was declared to need no further action, though monitoring is ongoing.
Weldon Spring Chemical Plant & Quarry
The Weldon Spring site comprises of different entities operated by the U.S. Department of Energy: the Weldon Spring Chemical Plant and the Weldon Spring Quarry. The site is located in St. Charles County, and the two operations are approximately 4 miles apart. The site was used to convert uranium and process other concentrates, like thorium. These materials and their decay products contaminated the building, equipment, the sewer system and surrounding area. The EPA found a variety of other hazards including asbestos debris, lead, and various metals. For cleanup, a large disposal cell was constructed for the waste products in 2001, and the agency is dedicated to long-term monitoring and continued cleanup for surrounding soils and groundwater.
Missouri Cities Where Asbestos Exposure Occurred
Read more about large jobsites where asbestos exposure occurred in the major cities of Missouri. If your occupation required you to work at any of these sites in Missouri, you may be at risk to develop malignant mesothelioma. Click on any link below to view a complete list of work sites in that city where employees were exposed to asbestos.
Asbestos Risks at Smaller Missouri Job Sites
Beyond the major cities and towns in Missouri, asbestos exposure has also occurred at a number of other job sites. 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 Missouri
House Bill (HB) 333 is making its way through the Missouri General Assembly despite the suffering it would cause mesothelioma victims. The bill is sponsored by Rep. Bruce DeGroot and would force asbestos plaintiffs to disclose specific details about when they filed claims against a trust within 30 days.
Author: Linda Molinari
Editor in Chief, Mesothelioma Cancer AllianceRead about Linda
Reviewer: Jennifer R. Lucarelli
Lawyer for Mesothelioma Victims and Their FamiliesRead about Jennifer
Cabrera-Santiago, Manuel et al. "Prevalence of Asbestos-Related Disease Among Electrical Power Generation Workers in Puerto Rico." Presentation at American Public Health Association Annual Meeting, 2007.
Dillon, Karen. “Management Company Fined $300,000 for Illegally Removing Asbestos.” Kansas City Star, 26 June 2007.
Evans, David and Greg Johnstone. “Asbestos Use Companies and Locations in Missouri.” All About Malignant Mesothelioma (September 2005.)
EWG Action Fund. “W. R. Grace Hotspots in Missouri.” Environmental Working Group, 1 June 2005.
http://www.ewg.org/files/MO_factsheet.pdf (accessed 23 August 2010).
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).