Guest post by: Brian Turner
Did you know that your favorite classic that you’ve been tinkering around with in the garage could be a source of dangerous chemicals that could give you cancer in later years? After initial exposure to asbestos, it can take decades for mesothelioma to pop up. Classic cars built before the early 1990s were especially prone to asbestos saturation in the brake linings, clutch plates, hood linings, brake pads, glues, and plastics that made up the cars. It was a cheap material that was easy to use, and scientists weren’t aware of the dangers of asbestos at that point. However, the classic cars made back then are still dangerous to people today that resurrect classic cars and bring them back to life in their garages. The reason is that these toxic chemicals still compose the different parts of the car that were such horrible offenders when the cars were first released. The cars were especially prone to chemical saturation because environmental regulations were so lax back then, and scientists didn’t know about the dangers that chemicals posed.
A recent study released by the Ecology Institute showed that modern cars possess hazardous chemicals too. This was alarming for car buyers, and the list got people thinking about whether or not they should write their congressmen and try to get better laws on the books to make car manufacturers take better care of their vehicles when manufacturing them for the benefit of consumers, even if it wasn’t as cheap to manufacture them in an ecologically and healthfully safe way. The point is that these cars are nothing compared to classic cars that have ten times the level of chemicals like lead, mercury, cadmium, bromine, chlorine, and the dreaded asbestos. Plus, auto mechanics work on the cars 8 hours a day or more, and they can inhale deadly amounts of these chemicals. When these chemicals get in the lungs, they can cause mesothelioma to form, and classic car enthusiasts are particularly at risk.
Just because classic cars look cool and fun doesn’t mean that they’re ok to drive and work on from a safety point of view. If you have a young son, and you are thinking about working with him in the garage on something, think twice about taking him near that classic car. You wouldn’t want his lungs to inhale any of those dangerous chemicals that have been proven time and time again to cause mesothelioma. A new hobby would be more suitable like working on a modern car with mechanics tools or model car building. Even taking him to the drag strip and letting him race would be safer than working on an old classic car. Just think about it because the dangers that chemicals pose are far worse than racing.
For more information, please visit the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance Blog.
(Click photo above to enlarge)