A model to determine non-occupational human exposure to Crocidolite asbestos fibres in the Northern Cape, South Africa.
Van der Walt, Izak
De Klerk, Theuns C.
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Numerous cases of asbestos-related health problems and more than 2700 deaths have been recorded in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa. Residents sought compensation from the now-defunct mining companies and the matter was eventually settled, out of court, in the United Kingdom, with Cape PLC awarding compensation to victims. To administer these funds, the Asbestos Relief Trust was established. Claimants who were employed by the asbestos industry received compensation. However, several nonoccupational claims for compensation were also lodged against the Asbestos Relief Trust. In this paper, a model is proposed to validate claims of people who were never employed by the asbestos industry. This model involves estimating fiber concentrations in the atmosphere likely to impact persons downwind, and involves the variables of wind speed and direction, distance from fiber source, time, and dosage exposure in fiber years. The paper thus presents an application of aeolian processes to health issues.