Asbestos has been found in the Tata Steel Mills on 35 different times over the past five years. This is confirmed by a company spokesperson at IJmuiden Norwegian Refugee Councilafter reporting from Nordhollands Dagblad. In total, Tata made 1,825 records of factory workers potentially exposed to asbestos at those times. “Asbestos is something that requires our constant attention,” the company says.
Tata stresses that there are no open sources of asbestos in the thirteen factories. Often, workers found hazardous materials during downtime and maintenance work. Then it is, for example, in an old motor or in a fireproof wall, according to the spokesperson. Since 1993, the Netherlands is no longer allowed to process asbestos in products. Exposure to asbestos can lead to various forms of cancer, which sometimes appear only years later.
The company cannot say exactly how many people have been exposed to asbestos, and how harmful it is. The fact that 1,825 registrations have been made in the past five years does not mean that 1,825 people have been exposed to asbestos: according to Tata, some people are likely to be listed more often. Additionally, in the event of an asbestos incident, everyone in the room is logged, regardless of room size or distance to the source.
A version of this article also appeared in The Sep 17, 2022
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