- Bus Drivers
- Heavy Equipment Operators
- Crane Operators
- Forklift Operators
- Shop Employees
- Marine/Shipyard Workers
While diesel exhaust has been suspected of causing cancer and other health problems for many decades, in 2012, a report issued by the World Health Organization found that:
“Diesel engine exhaust causes cancer in humans”
Your employers can no longer deny that your workplace exposures are unrelated to certain conditions like cancer, asthma, COPD and leukemia – illnesses all linked to diesel exhaust.
You may work in a polluted environment!
California has begun an extensive analysis into diesel exhaust and found that diesel exhaust contributes about 84% of the cancer risk from air pollution in the region. And what is the source of the air pollution? Worrying diesel concentrations are found along transportation corridors, including freeways, major roadways, and railroad right-of-ways. The highest diesel exhaust concentrations were found around ports, owing to the many trucks, locomotives, cargo-handling equipment and ships in the area. Because cancer-risk tracks the level of diesel exhaust in the air, California has determined that those people living in close proximity to transportation corridors or ports are 75% more likely to get cancer from air pollution when compared to the lucky people who live far away from highways, train lines and ports.
But Wait, I Spend All Day Working in Transportation?
It goes without saying that the workers earning a living wage in the movement of our nation’s freight, including truck drivers, dockworkers, marine and shipyard workers, are regular victims of diesel exhaust exposure. And it’s not just from air pollution. Old, improperly maintained equipment and a lack of safety training often leads to unnecessary diesel exhaust exposures. Gradually, those daily exposures can lead to serious illnesses including Cancers of the Mouth, Nose, and Throat, along with pulmonary and blood disorders. Many doctors do not appreciate or consider their patients’ daily workplace exposures and thus the doctor might align an illness with a previous tobacco habit instead of looking deeper into the likely cause – diesel exhaust.