Asbestos Exposure and Mesothelioma in Wyoming
If you have worked and lived in Wyoming 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 Wyoming, we have compiled the following information about asbestos and mesothelioma in Wyoming.
Below you will find recent statistics about asbestos exposure and mesothelioma in Wyoming. We have also included descriptions of the industries and lists of cities, towns and specific job sites where asbestos exposure has occurred. Local Wyoming mesothelioma doctors and treatment centers are listed and recent news articles about asbestos and mesothelioma in Wyoming are also provided.
Wyoming Mesothelioma and Asbestos Statistics
From 1999-2015, 109 Wyoming residents died from mesothelioma
- Wyoming has a mesothelioma mortality rate of about 12 people per million each year, which is higher than the national average (Source: CDC)
- Wyoming has 12 known asbestos occurrences, including one site at the foothills of the Rocky Mountains (Source: USGS)
- Natrona and Laramie counties have experienced significantly more asbestos-related deaths than elsewhere in the state (Source: CDC)
Asbestos Use Across Wyoming Industries
Wyoming’s economy largely relies on oil, an industry known to be especially dangerous with its asbestos use. Other industries within the state have also put workers at risk of exposure.
Wyoming is home to an abundance of petroleum, making the state a hotspot for refineries. Refineries can be found all over the state, including in Cheyenne where Frontier Refining Company and Husky Oil Company are located. The oil industry used massive amounts of asbestos in constructing their facilities and in their machinery, to protect the equipment and workers from the possible fires. Its heavy use means thousands of oil refinery workers are at risk for developing mesothelioma later in life.
For many power plants, asbestos was commonly used for boilers and insulation to protect equipment and facilities from potential fires. Asbestos insulation was also common in these plants to protect against the heat and electricity created from power generation. Hot Springs Light and Power Company in Thermopolis, Black Hills Power and Light Company in Wyodak, and Pacific Power Company in Green River are among the power plants known to have caused asbestos exposure.
Allied Chemical Plant and Stauffer Chemical Plant, among several others in the state, have been documented as asbestos exposure sites. Both chemical plants focused on the production of soda ash, which is critical for many other industries including inexpensive glass production. Since Wyoming has many trona deposits, which is an ore used to make soda ash, along the Green Basin shoreline, many chemical plants popped up in the state to take advantage of the natural resource. Because asbestos could not only resist high heat but also most chemical reactions, it became a standard material in many of these chemical plants.
The University of Wyoming received a violation from the Department of Environmental Quality in 2009 after failing to properly conduct inspections for asbestos. As a result, buildings on campus were bought by a Laramie resident and removed for a construction project which resulted in asbestos contamination. After removal, the site wasn’t cleaned up properly and an inspection a few months later showed some asbestos remained. The school took action to clean the site soon after the asbestos was discovered.
Asbestos Exposure at Smaller Wyoming Sites
Beyond the major cities and towns in Wyoming, 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.
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.
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).
Sorahan, Tom. “Mortality of UK Oil Refinery and Petroleum Distribution Workers, 1951-2003.” Occupational Medicine 57, no. 3 (2007): 177-85.