Standing Up For The Rights Of Workers Exposed to Toxins in Long Island and New York City
Employees in any type of workplace are at risk of being exposed to harmful chemicals. Whether these are every day cleaning supplies or chemicals involved in manufacturing, any toxic exposure can result in devastating and fatal injuries. If you have been injured due to toxic exposure on the job, a work injury lawyer at our law firm can help.
At Turley Redmond & Rosasco, L.L.P., our workers’ comp attorneys have decades of experience handling toxic exposure and other workplace injury cases. Our firm thoroughly investigates your case, using our legal knowledge and insight, as well as the input from experts that may be enlisted to help determine who is responsible for you injuries. We understand the impact that any work-related injury can have on your life and aggressively pursue the compensation you deserve from any and all negligent parties.
Our lawyers work directly with clients who have suffered due to exposure to asbestos, benzene, mercury, paint, solvents, pesticides and other chemicals. Workers who often deal with these types of chemicals are to be provided with the proper safety equipment and secured areas to ensure worker safety. These can include protective goggles, gloves and clothing; respirators; hazmat suits; and properly ventilated work spaces. When there has been a failure in mandated safety precautions, an employer, third-party or other party may be held responsible if found liable.
Common Toxins That Can Cause Injury
Different types of workers face exposure to different types of toxins. Some of the most common types of toxins in the workplace include:
- Arsenic: Arsenic is a naturally occurring element in the Earth’s crust that can cause a wide range of health issues, depending on the level of exposure. These include skin diseases; constriction in the arteries and veins; lung, liver, kidney, and bladder cancers; lung distress; and death, with acute exposure. Industries that utilize arsenic include wood preservation, glass production, nonferrous metal alloys, and semiconductor manufacturing.
- Asbestos: Asbestos is a mineral resistant to heat and corrosion, which was used for many years as fireproofing material. Inhaling asbestos particles causes a buildup of scar-like tissue in the lungs that can eventually result in loss of lung function, mesothelioma, and death. Construction workers are particularly vulnerable to asbestos exposure.
- Asphalt fumes: As a petroleum product, the fumes emitted by hot asphalt can cause headaches, skin rash, fatigue, reduced appetite, throat and eye irritation, cough, and skin cancer. Highway construction workers are routinely exposed to asphalt fumes.
- Benzene: Benzene is a colorless, flammable liquid that quickly evaporates when exposed to air. Depending upon the level and length of exposure, benzene can cause dizziness, unconsciousness, leukemia, and death. It is used extensively to manufacture plastics, rubbers, dyes, lubricants, detergents, and pesticides.
- Beryllium: Beryllium is a metal whose particles can cling to clothing and be inhaled. Exposure to it can cause a lung disease known as chronic beryllium disease (CBD) and lung cancer. Workers who face exposure to beryllium include foundry and furnace workers, machinists, welders, metal fabricators, and dental technicians.
- Formaldehyde: Formaldehyde is a preservative chemical that is used widely as an embalming fluid. Short-term exposure to high levels of formaldehyde can be fatal, while long-term exposure to low amounts can lead to respiratory problems and skin irritation. Workers in the mortuary industry are routinely exposed to formaldehyde.
- Lead: Lead is a metal that is used to make automotive batteries, ammunition, pipes, cable coverings, radiation shielding, and paints and glazes. It typically enters the body through inhalation of lead-containing dust or ingestion of lead-containing substances and can cause cognitive dysfunction, gastrointestinal effects, anemia, and kidney disease. Workers in the construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade and remediation industries are often exposed to lead.
- Mercury: Mercury is a metallic element that is used most commonly in the mining and refining of gold and silver, but it can also be found in thermometers, lubricating oils, and batteries. Exposure can result in neurological damage, impaired motor skills, muscle weakness, and heart disease.
Silica (Crystalline): Crystalline silica is an element found in the Earth’s crust and is a component of sand, stone, concrete, and mortar. Inhalation of crystalline silica can result in silicosis, lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and kidney disease. Workers in the construction and fracking industries are commonly exposed to crystalline silica.
Injuries Resulting From Chemical Exposure
Exposure to even a small amount of certain chemicals can leave an individual with lifelong side effects. We handle wrongful death cases when a toxic exposure has been fatal, and injuries from chemical exposure, such as:
- Burns: When skin comes into contact with a toxic substance, it can cause serious burns that require extensive medical attention, with the most severe burns requiring skin grafts and leaving you susceptible to infection. Lungs and internal organs can be burned if a chemical is accidentally inhaled or swallowed.
- Lung damage: Even one instance of toxic fume inhalation can cause serious damage to your lungs. Pulmonary issues, such as asthma, can make it difficult to breathe for years to come.
- Brain damage: Breathing in toxic fumes not only impacts your lungs, but your brain as well. Neurological damage can be permanent, and cause memory loss, seizures, decrease in motor function as well as incapacitation and death.
- Allergic reactions: Serious allergic reactions from exposure to toxins can often be life-threatening. The most serious can cause a person’s nervous system to cease functioning or their airways to restrict, resulting in a loss of consciousness or even death.
- Cancer: Chronic, long-term exposure to toxic substances can often cause various forms of cancer. Some of the most common are mesothelioma and leukemia.
- Sensory damage: Exposure to several types of toxic substances can result in a loss of feeling in the extremities or impaired motor functions, as well as blindness if the eyes are exposed.
Talk to a Work Injury Lawyer at Our Firm to Discuss Your Options for Recovery
Exposed to toxic chemicals at work? You may be entitled to compensation and we can help you apply for benefits. Call a work injury lawyer at the law firm of Turley Redmond & Rosasco, L.L.P., toll-free at 800-671-4927 or contact us online to schedule your free initial consultation. We have conveniently located offices in Shirley, Riverhead, Ronkonkoma, Garden City, and New York City.