Why is asbestos a problem?

When asbestos is disturbed, it can break down into microscopic fibers that may become airborne. Once airborne, these fibers can be inhaled and trapped in the lungs, posing a health threat. Breathing asbestos can cause respiratory diseases including asbestosis, lung cancer, and mesothelioma, a cancer of the chest cavity lining. More detailed information can be found on EPA’s asbestos web site.