A Chicago alderman is fighting to have an ordinance passed that would ban the use of a certain type of coal sealant that is commonly used on cracks in asphalt in the city of Chicago and throughout much of Illinois and the rest of the country. The reason that the Alderman is trying to have this type of coal sealant banned within the city of Chicago is that it has high level of carcinogens. The proposal that would call for a ban of this specific sealant is set to be revealed this week.
The manufacturer of this coal sealant promotes this product because they claim that this sealant extends the life of asphalt. However, those opposed to the use of this coal sealant claim that the level of carcinogens in this product are dangerous to the public because it can lead to cancer in those exposed. People may not realize how the sealant used on asphalt can affect pedestrians but there is evidence that the sealant wears off over time and the wear and tear creates a dust that gets into the air and of which is filled with these dangerous carcinogens. Certain studies have shown that this dust has even been trailed into people’s homes and carried into lake water. While this product is still considered legal in most regions of the country, according to the Chicago Tribune, there have been numerous cases in which companies that have dumped large amounts of this product have been prosecuted for this waste. This shows that there must be inherent danger in this product and that it can cause harm to the public that is exposed to these materials.
Many other counties and municipalities all over the country have expressed concern over this same issue. Austin, Texas was the first city to ban this type of coal sealant back in 2005 and many other United States cities and towns have also moved in this direction, banning the use of this specific type of dangerous coal sealant within their boundaries. The Chicago suburb of South Barrington is one of the many municipalities that have already banned the use of this product. The Chicago Alderman that is supporting this ordinance has state that he feels that it is time for Chicago to side with these other cities and counties and make sure that the sealants used on Chicago asphalt are safe for pedestrians.
Our Chicago personal injury attorneys support the use of safer products as sealants, especially when there is convincing evidence that these sealants can wear away and create dust that enters the air stream. We believe that is important to place residents safety above the quality and ability to last of a product and that an alternative must be used if the current option may cause severe personal injuries to people.