If you attended the University of Colorado as a student or worked there as a faculty or staff member, you may have been exposed to a dangerous substance called asbestos. Asbestos has been linked to many serious health problems, including an aggressive form of cancer known as mesothelioma. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma or another illness caused by exposure to asbestos, and worked at or attended school at the University of Colorado, you may have grounds to file a lawsuit against the University of Colorado.
Contact Bailey & Glasser, LLP to discuss a potential claim. Our asbestos attorneys handle cases nationwide. We have a long history of success and are dedicated to helping victims of asbestos exposure at schools, colleges and universities. Call (866) 871-7971 today.
- What is asbestos? Asbestos is a group of six naturally occurring minerals that were widely used for the manufacture of a variety of products in the 1800s and 1900s, until asbestos was discovered to cause cancer in the 1980s.
- Where is asbestos often found? Today, asbestos can be found in many different products. Common examples are fireproofing materials, insulation, pipes and ductwork, drywall, plasters, ceiling and floor tiles, and roof shingles.
- Why is asbestos dangerous? If it is inhaled or ingested, asbestos particles can become lodged inside the body. Over time, they can cause enough irritation and scar tissue to turn into cancerous tumors and cause other health problems.
- What illnesses are associated with asbestos? Asbestos exposure has been linked to cancers such as mesothelioma, lung cancer, ovarian cancer and laryngeal cancer. It can also cause chronic illnesses such as asbestosis, pleural plaques and pleural effusion.
- Can you recover from an asbestos-related illness? Unfortunately, there is no known cure for many of the cancers and illnesses related to exposure to asbestos. With treatments, however, a victim can often improve his or her life expectancy and quality of life.
Is There Asbestos Present at the University of Colorado?
Millions of buildings that were constructed prior to the 1990s contain asbestos. Schools are no exception. Asbestos has been discovered in thousands of schools and universities around the country – especially older universities with historic buildings. Many products used to build university campuses, as well as equipment such as lab benches and chalkboards, contain asbestos.
The University of Colorado was founded in 1876. Many of its buildings date back to this time. Any of these buildings may contain asbestos, such as in the cement, joint compounds or brick mortar of their structures. Any materials used for insulation, soundproofing or fireproofing are also likely to contain asbestos. Even newer rooms and buildings may contain asbestos, including auditoriums, stadiums, classrooms, dorm rooms and offices built before the 1990s. The university itself has publicly stated that a number of its facilities were built with materials that contain asbestos.
In 2003, an asbestos contamination incident occurred at the University of Colorado at Boulder in a powerhouse facility near the Williams Village residence hall complex. Although students and the public were not affected by this incident, 12 to 16 employees were working in the area. A more recent incident occurred in 2012, when the presence of asbestos in the College Inn building led to a $1.5 million demolition. These are just two of many documented cases of asbestos being present at this university.
What Are the University of Colorado’s Asbestos Management Procedures?
In an effort to protect students and staff members from the risk of asbestos exposure, the University of Colorado has created an Asbestos and Lead Management Unit that is responsible for asbestos discovery, maintenance and abatement. This unit oversees building maintenance projects and campus activities to ensure the safe removal of asbestos. It is part of the university’s larger Environmental Health & Safety Policy.
The goal of the Asbestos Management Unit is not to remove asbestos from campus entirely, as this would cost millions of dollars, but to make it possible for university members to “safely coexist with asbestos.” Unfortunately, this is not always possible. Incidents have occurred where asbestos-containing materials were accidentally disturbed – potentially exposing students and staff members to dangerous levels of asbestos.
What Can You Do as a Victim of Asbestos Exposure at the University of Colorado?
If you have been diagnosed with an illness that is connected to asbestos and believe you were exposed to asbestos at the University of Colorado, you have rights. You may be entitled to financial compensation through one or more legal outlets as a student, teacher, faculty member or staff.
Your legal options may include:
- Personal injury lawsuit – if your attorney can prove that the University of Colorado was negligent because it failed to protect students or staff from known asbestos hazards, you will have grounds to file an individual lawsuit against the school for contributing to your illness.
- Wrongful death lawsuit – negligence could also give your family grounds to file a wrongful death claim against the University of Colorado if someone close to you passed away due to mesothelioma or another asbestos-related illness after being exposed to asbestos on campus.
- Workers’ compensation claim – if you were an employee at the University of Colorado at the time of asbestos exposure, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation. This type of claim typically does not require you to prove that the University was negligent.
An asbestos attorney can help you explore your legal options and choose the right path forward based on your circumstances. If your lawyer suggests a claim against the manufacturer of the asbestos-containing product instead of the University, for example, he or she can help you file a product liability lawsuit. No matter what option is right for you, you do not have to go through the claims process alone.
Consult With an Asbestos Attorney for More Information
At Bailey & Glasser, LLP, we don’t believe that anyone should work at or attend a university and come away with a life-changing illness due to the negligence of others. We have a team of asbestos and mesothelioma attorneys ready to help you and your family move forward with a claim. We are dedicated to pursuing justice for victims of asbestos exposure at schools, colleges and universities throughout the country.
Learn more when you contact one of our intake specialists. Call (866) 871-7971 or send us a message for a prompt callback. We look forward to hearing from you.