Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Background Briefing on Asbestos

Asbestos is pretty scary stuff, and this is a good story. I'm not a fan of the renovation craze, too many TV shows and the people upstairs are no doubt responsible for that, but now I finally have a much better reason. Renovators are at a very high risk of asbestos related illnesses due to their lack of knowledge, low budgets for safety (and hiring professionals) and tendency to get dodgy contractors in to do a quick and dirty job.

Construction workers are also obviously at a high risk, and the numbers are pretty huge -- 300 deaths per year from accidents and another 2000 or so from illnesses contracted while on the job.

What is also a bit scary is that Canada is the world's largest exporter of asbestos, sending it to third world countries. It's easy to put Canada on a pedestal, they generally compare very well with the USA, but they're hardly perfect.

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