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Artificial Stone Countertops Injure Workers

by Whitfield Bryson & Mason | Construction Defect|Consumer Products | Share

One of the most commonly renovated rooms in any house is the kitchen. Many home improvement aficionados like to use fancy countertops, especially in the kitchen, but not everyone can afford granite or marble. As a cheaper alternative, artificial stone is often used for bathroom and kitchen countertops. Engineered stone took off as a popular option for countertops about a decade ago and is now one of the most common choices for kitchens and bathrooms. From 2010 to 2018, imports of the material rose about 800%. And along with a better price point, engineered stone is a more eco-friendly choice than natural stone.

However, as more workers work with and are exposed to artificial or engineered stone by grinding it, cutting it, polishing it, and more, a troubling trend has emerged. Many of these workers are suffering from irreversible lung injuries, and some have even died due to silica exposure. Several workers have received definitive silicosis diagnoses.

Silicosis is a progressive lung disease that can only be treated with a lung transplant. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “stone fabrication workers, especially those working with engineered stone, are at risk for silicosis. Given the serious health hazard and significant number of workers at risk, additional efforts are needed to reduce exposures and improve disease surveillance.”

Top Manufacturers of Engineered Stone Countertops

  • Caesarstone
  • Cambria
  • Corian
  • Granite Transformations
  • HanStone
  • IceStone
  • LG Hausys
  • Okite
  • MSI
  • Silestone
  • Vena Stone
  • Viaters

Artificial Stone Countertop Lawsuits

The main types of construction defects are design, material, and workmanship defects. Design defects occur by error or omission on the part of the designer in his or her design of the product. Material defects have to do with inadequate or substandard building materials. Workmanship defects occur when a contractor fails to complete their job in accordance with the contract terms.

Proving these defects in court is a complex matter that should be left to experienced products liability lawyers like those at Whitfield, Bryson & Mason. Contact our lawyers today to see how we can help you.

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Whitfield Bryson & Mason

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