British Study Shows Heightened Cancer Risk Associated With Worksites

Posted on June 21, 2012

A new study is showcasing one of the many dangers that workers face at construction sites and in other occupations.

The study, which was conducted by researchers from Imperial College London and which was funded by Health & Safety Executive and published in the British Journal of Cancer, determined that 5% of people who have died from cancer in Britain have their condition linked to their occupation.  This equates to an astounding 8,000 deaths from cancer that may have been potentially caused by a hazardous workplace.

Nearly half of all persons whose cancer was occupation-related and who died turned out to be construction workers.  3,668 construction workers died from cancer, which amounts to 48% of all occupational cancer deaths.  And 70% of these cases may have been caused directly or indirectly by contact with asbestos.

Those aren’t the only astounding numbers the study came up with.  Every year, according to the research, 13,600 people contract cancer due to risk factors presented by their employment.  Night shift work, for whatever reason, led to nearly 2,000 women getting breast cancer, while other trouble areas sprang from exposure to the sun, silica, exhaust from diesel engines, and the mineral oil typical in printing and metal industries.  Lung cancer was found to be the most typical work-related form of cancer which leads to death.

The authors of the study hoped that these new statistics could be used by various entities to develop safeguards against cancer in the workplace.

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