Occidental Chemical Corporation employees exposed to asbestos
Currently, a chemical plant of the company, Diamond Alkali, which is located in New Jersey, is a Superfund site. The Environmental Protection Agency is doing everything possible to clean up the hazardous chemicals released by the manufacturer. At the end of 2016, Occidental Chemical Corporation agreed to a settlement with the agency to perform the engineering and design work necessary to begin the cleanup of the lower 8 miles of the Passaic River, a process whose cost is estimated at $165 million. Interestingly, Occidental Chemical Corporation used to manufacture the herbicides that were the primary ingredients in the infamous Agent Orange. The New Jersey plant of the company became a Superfund site in 1984. Some of the contaminants of concern found by the Environmental Protection Agency in the river were dioxins, polychlorinated biphenyls, heavy metals, and pesticides.
Occidental Chemical Corporation is the leading producer of chlorine, potassium hydroxide, and caustic soda in the U.S. It is also the top producer of vinyl chloride monomers in North America. In addition to the serious pollution the company is responsible for in New Jersey, it also exposed workers to asbestos before 1980, as the manufacturing of chemicals requires large amounts of energy and heat. Asbestos is the perfect material to prevent overheating, fires, and explosions, and because it was widely available and cheap at the time, it was the go-to material for the majority of chemical manufacturers in the country. The boilers in the chemicals plants of Occidental Chemical Corporation were insulated with asbestos, and the mineral was also used in pipes, tanks, pumps, gaskets, valves, and steam lines.
Every time employees would disturb asbestos insulation, it would release toxic fibers that they would unavoidably inhale and ingest. Furthermore, chemical plant workers would be exposed to asbestos from the very protective equipment they had to wear when they were maintaining or repairing machinery or equipment prone to overheating. They would wear asbestos gloves, masks, and aprons and use asbestos cloth and asbestos blankets to handle components that were hot. The following are the occupational groups exposed to asbestos in the chemical plants of Occidental Chemical Corporation:
If you were employed at Occidental Chemical Corporation between the 1920s and the 1980s and came to suffer from a disease caused by asbestos exposure, we encourage you to give our team a phone call, as you are most likely eligible to file a claim. By filing a claim for occupational asbestos exposure, you will eventually receive the financial compensation you deserve for your distress.