At-Risk Occupations for Asbestos & Mesothelioma

For decades, workers were unknowingly exposed to harmful asbestos on the job. Thousands are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year.

Asbestos, once hailed for its heat resistance and insulation properties, is now better known as the primary cause of diseases such as mesothelioma, a rare cancer. Certain occupations put workers at a greater risk of asbestos exposure—and thus at a higher risk of developing mesothelioma.

Asbestos Exposure in the Workplace

Asbestos was widely used in commercial and industrial applications and products until the late 20th century. Workers across various industries often unknowingly inhaled or ingested microscopic asbestos fibers from direct exposure to asbestos-containing materials. These fibers can cause inflammation and scarring in the lungs and, over time, potentially lead to mesothelioma.

Companies were often aware of the dangers of asbestos but failed to disclose this information to individuals who handled their products. If you or a loved one worked in an occupation at risk for asbestos exposure and have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, you have the right to seek compensation. Contact our experienced mesothelioma law firm for a free case consultation.

Occupations at Risk for Mesothelioma

Asbestos statistics show that certain occupations pose a higher risk of asbestos exposure. These include auto mechanics, construction workers, machine operators, military service members and shipyard workers. Boiler/HVAC workers, plumbers and electricians are also among the many occupations at risk for asbestos exposure.

Auto Mechanics

Auto mechanics can come into contact with asbestos when working with parts such as brake pads or clutch linings. Older vehicles may still contain this hazardous material despite asbestos being phased out of most automotive parts. Mechanics can inhale airborne asbestos fibers when these parts are disturbed.

Construction Workers

Construction workers are at risk due to the widespread use of asbestos in building materials, including insulation, roofing and flooring. Cutting, sanding or otherwise disturbing these materials can release asbestos fibers into the air.

Machine Operators

Machine operators, particularly those in industrial settings, may have been exposed to asbestos through insulation on machinery or in protective clothing. Asbestos was often used in these settings due to its heat-resistant properties.

Military Service Members

Many military veterans, particularly those who served in the Navy, were exposed to asbestos. The material was commonly used in ships, aircraft, and other military vehicles.

While Navy veterans may have been exposed to asbestos at higher rates, all branches of the military used asbestos at some time. This includes the Army, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard. Veterans make up a significant portion of mesothelioma cases in the United States.

Shipyard Workers

Shipyard workers, particularly those involved in shipbuilding and repair, were often exposed to asbestos. The material was used extensively in ships for its fireproofing and insulation properties.

Additional At-Risk Occupations

Certain occupations and lifestyles have a documented history of significant asbestos exposure. If your current or previous occupation or lifestyle falls into any of these categories, it may be prudent to seek medical evaluation from your physician for potential asbestos-related health conditions:

  • Aeronautical Engineer
  • Aircraft Mechanics and Repair Workers
  • Asbestos Plant Workers
  • Auto Mechanics
  • Blacksmiths
  • Boilermakers
  • Brick Masons and Stone Masons
  • Building Managers and Superintendents
  • Bulldozer Operators
  • Cabinetmakers
  • Carpenters
  • Car Shop Workers
  • Checkers, Examiners & Inspectors, Manufacturing
  • Chemical Technicians
  • Civil Engineers
  • Clothing Ironers and Pressers
  • Crane, Derrick and Hoist Operators
  • Draftsmen
  • Drill Press Operatives
  • Drywall Tapers
  • Electric Power Line Workers and Cable Workers
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineers
  • Electricians
  • Engineers
  • Excavating Machine Operators
  • Filers, Polishers, Sanders, Buffers
  • Foremen
  • Forge Workers
  • Freight and Material Handlers
  • Furnace Workers, Smelter Workers and Pourers
  • Garage Workers and Gas Station Attendants
  • Grinding Machine Operatives
  • Hairdressers and Cosmetologists
  • Heavy Equipment Mechanics
  • Household Appliances Installers and Mechanics
  • Household Residents of Exposed Workers
  • Industrial Engineers
  • Industrial Plant Workers
  • Insulators
  • Iron Workers
  • Job and Die Setters
  • Laborers
  • Locomotive Engineers
  • Longshore Workers and Stevedores
  • Loom Fixers
  • Machine Operators
  • Machinists
  • Machinist Mates
  • Maintenance Workers
  • Mechanical Engineers
  • Merchant Marines
  • Metal Lathers
  • Millwrights
  • Mixing Operatives
  • Molders
  • Ship Officers, Pilots and Pursers
  • Oil Refinery Workers
  • Operating Engineers
  • Painters, Construction and Maintenance
  • Painters and Sculptors
  • Personnel and Labor Relations Workers
  • Pipefitters
  • Plasterers
  • Plumbers
  • Power Plant Workers
  • Railroad Workers
  • Residents of towns with former Asbestos Manufacturing Plants
  • Road Machine Operators
  • Rollers and Finishers
  • Roofers and Slaters
  • Sailors and Deckhands
  • Sales Engineers
  • Sawyers
  • Sheetmetal Workers
  • Shipyard Workers
  • Stationary Engineers
  • Steamfitters
  • Structural Metal Craftsmen
  • Teachers: Elementary, College and University
  • Technicians
  • Telephone Installers and Repair Workers
  • Textile Operatives
  • Tile Setters
  • Tinsmiths
  • Tool and Die Makers
  • U.S. Navy Veterans
  • Weavers
  • Welders and Flame-cutters
  • Winding Operatives

Frequently Asked Questions

Which industries are exposed to asbestos?

Asbestos was widely used in many industries, including construction, automotive, shipbuilding and manufacturing. Even today, workers in these industries may come into contact with older materials that contain asbestos.

Which jobs are most at risk for asbestos exposure?

Jobs that involve working directly with asbestos-containing materials are the most at risk. This includes auto mechanics, construction workers, machine operators, military service members and shipyard workers. However, any occupation involving older buildings, machinery or products with asbestos may lead to exposure.

Request a Free Case Evaluation

Request a free case evaluation now if you or someone you love has been diagnosed with mesothelioma. The evaluation will cost you nothing. Our lawyers will travel to visit you at your convenience or conference call with you over the phone. We understand how difficult a time this is for you and will assist in any way that we can. You can also call us toll-free at 1-800-336-0086 at any time.