As the world continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for protective masks has skyrocketed. Unfortunately, a recent report has revealed that some of the N100 masks being sold in the United States contain asbestos, a known carcinogen.
The report, which was released by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), found that some of the masks tested contained asbestos fibers. The masks were purchased from online retailers, including Amazon, eBay, and Walmart.
The EWG is urging consumers to stop using the masks immediately and to contact the retailer for a refund. The organization is also calling on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate the issue and take action to protect consumers.
Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral that has been used in a variety of products, including insulation, roofing materials, and brake pads. Exposure to asbestos can cause serious health problems, including lung cancer and mesothelioma.
It is important to note that not all N100 masks contain asbestos. The EWG is recommending that consumers check the label of the mask to make sure it does not contain asbestos. If the label does not indicate that the mask is asbestos-free, the consumer should not use it.
In addition to avoiding masks that contain asbestos, the EWG is also recommending that consumers take other steps to protect themselves from the virus. This includes washing hands frequently, avoiding close contact with others, and wearing a face covering when in public.
The EWG is also calling on the FDA to take action to ensure that all masks sold in the United States are safe and free of asbestos. The organization is urging the FDA to require manufacturers to test their masks for asbestos and to provide consumers with clear labeling that indicates whether or not the masks contain asbestos.
The discovery of asbestos in N100 masks is concerning, but it is important to remember that not all masks contain asbestos. Consumers should take steps to protect themselves from the virus, including avoiding masks that contain asbestos and following the CDC’s guidelines for preventing the spread of the virus.