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Workers in numerous fields encounter objects, items, and situations that can lead to the possibility of chemical burns. Like all burns, chemical burns can range from minor to deadly, making it important for every employee to take safety concerns seriously. Otherwise, workers may need to take time off to recuperate, necessitating the initiation of a Workers’ Compensation claim or, in more extreme cases, a personal injury lawsuit.
Chemical burns occur when a chemical agent or otherwise toxic substance causes harm to the soft tissues, organs, or other parts of the body. A few frequently seen chemical burn-causing substances include acids, pesticides, and solvents.
The chemical does not have to spill directly on a person to cause problems. For instance, airborne chemical distribution can lead to irritation and injury of the eyes, lungs, and other areas. Similarly, inhaled toxic items may cause burns inside the body that can only be seen through medical tests.
Workers who are most likely to be impacted at work by chemical burns should always rely on safety equipment and protocols to limit exposure to chemical agents. Some of the basic safety gear available to employees include helmets, prescription or non-prescription protective eyewear, and gloves. In some situations, employees may have to access eye wash stations immediately to wash away chemicals when appropriate or wear whole-body hazmat suits for coverage.
In addition to these types of safety options, teams may adopt certain processes and procedures that reduce the risk of chemical burns. Normally, any operational safety measures will be explained to workers through initial and ongoing training and development. Over time, the measures may change relative to evolving needs of the company or an individual worker’s position.
When an individual suffers from a chemical burn, the person may experience numerous symptoms, not all of which are immediately apparent. Rashes, blisters, red marks, welts, and obvious signs of irritation and tissue burning often coincide with chemical burn incidents. Additionally, less obvious symptoms can include mouth, lung, throat, and eye irritation, and pain. Exposure to especially toxic agents have even been linked to brain damage, nerve damage, and other potentially life-altering conditions.
Response time remains critical in limiting the lasting effects of chemical burns. Workers should follow the designated first aid steps after exposure to any toxic chemical, such as washing off the chemical, applying burn cream, or calling 911. Medical attention is always warranted to document even mild chemical burns, as the burns could lead to difficulties later.
Workers who cannot go back to work immediately after a chemical burn accident may want to file a Workers’ Compensation claim with the help of a legal representative. This allows them to receive the correct monetary compensation for their suffering.
Chemical burns can lead to extensive physical and mental problems. If you or a loved one was exposed to a chemical at work, you may be entitled to compensation. The Wilmington work accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow have the experience to walk you through the process and help you obtain the maximum benefit for your injury. Contact us online or call us at 302-427-9500 for a free consultation today. Located in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state, including the areas of Elsmere and Seaford.