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Every day we are surrounded by hazardous chemicals. Cleaning agents, gas for our cars, and industrial chemicals at work all carry serious risks for injury if they are not properly transported, stored, or do not have adequate warnings. According to an investigation by the Arizona Center for Investigative Reporting, more than 2.8 million Arizona residents live within areas vulnerable to toxic chemical spills. Exposure to these chemicals can cause pain, blindness, suffocation, or even death.
Some of the most common hazardous chemical injuries involve children. Young children may be unable to understand the risks associated with touching, or even drinking certain chemicals. Their developing respiratory systems may also be more vulnerable to chemical fumes. One of the most difficult things a parent can endure is a child suffering a hazardous chemical injury.
Because manufacturers are often aware that children may come into contact with chemical products, they should make sure that their product is safe, and cannot be easily opened or accidentally spilled by a child. Additionally, these products should contain adequate warnings to parents, and should not be marketed in such a way as to be enticing to children.
If manufacturers have put out a defective product, or given an insufficient warning, they should be held responsible for the injuries they caused. If your child has suffered a hazardous chemical injury, talk to an experienced personal injury attorney. They may be able to advise you of your options to get compensation for your child's injuries and other damages.
People who work around chemicals may also be at an increased risk for hazardous chemical injury. Some of the most common chemicals causing injury or death include carbon monoxide, ammonia, chlorine, hydrochloric acid, lead, mercury, fluorides, ozone, zinc, cadmium, and sulfuric acid. These chemicals can take liquid, gas, or even solid form.
Many of these chemicals can be colorless, clear, and even odorless, making them difficult to identify if they are not contained in a properly labeled container. Exposure can cause sudden illness or even death; however, in other cases, it may take long-term exposure before an injury becomes evident. Exposure to caustic chemicals can also cause burning to the skin, eyes, mouth, and lungs.
Employers are required to maintain a safe working environment. This includes proper warnings, safety procedures, chemical storage, adequate ventilation, employee training, and remedying any possible workplace safety issues. However, some employers are more concerned with profit than safety.
If an employee is injured on the job due to a hazardous chemical injury, they should talk to an attorney. The employer may deny responsibility, or even deny a workers' compensation claim, leaving the employee without an income and facing thousands in medical bills. Your attorney can make sure the employer takes responsibility for their negligent action, and fight to get you the compensation you deserve.
At West, Longenbaugh and Zickerman, our Arizona personal injury attorneys are here to help individuals and families throughout southern Arizona. We will work with you and advise you of all your legal rights and make sure you are fully compensated for your injuries. Our team of lawyers are committed to addressing the individual needs of each of our clients and getting them the best results.