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What’s the Deal with the Steam Pipe Explosions in New York City?

Given the events that have occurred in New York City over the past 20 years, any explosion that occurs in New York City is going to create a lot of anxiety and leave millions of people demanding answers. It’s understandable, as New York City is and always has been considered a target for every type of criminal, terrorist and general miscreant. That’s why the recent steam pipe explosion has not only generated a lot of anger on its own, but others have begun to seriously question why so many of these types of explosions have occurred since 1987.

History of Steam Pipe Explosions – 1987 – Present

Since 1987, more than a dozen explosions of this type have occurred in New York City, and all of them involved Con Edison. Specifically, these steam pipe explosions have occurred underground and have created an almost geyser-like effect every time they occur. Given the events of September 11, any time a New Yorker sees a plume of steam and smoke rising from the streets, he or she will understandably be fearful of what could possibly be causing this incident.

Although, according to records, “only” two people have been killed in these explosions, dozens, if not hundreds, have been injured, and this series of explosions have caused what could potentially be far greater damage than the millions of dollars that have already been spent to repair the direct structural damage that has occurred.

Poison in the Air

The most significant potential for long term damage that will be inflicted upon the citizens of New York City is that several of these explosions send clouds of asbestos into the air and allow this toxic substance to begin circulating the local atmosphere. In fact, the explosion in 1989 that killed those two people also led to a $2 million fine for Con Edison, as it was found that the utility had lied about the presence of asbestos in that explosion.

Most of us understand what it means to be exposed to asbestos. If that happens, asbestos fibers, which can be microscopic in nature, penetrate the lung tissues in people who inhale it, and this penetration can lead to the development of mesothelioma. However, this disease does not appear immediately, and can take decades to fully develop.

Hopefully we will all soon know what’s happening with these explosions in New York City. If you have been harmed in any explosion, contact an explosion attorney at Williams Hart today to schedule a free initial consultation.

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