Can You File for Benefits if You’re Exposed to a Dangerous Chemical at Work?

Most people are fortunate enough that they don’t have to work in a dangerous environment. Other employees have to worry about being exposed to dangerous chemicals at work every day. Our Miami workers’ compensation lawyers can help make sure you receive the benefits and medical care you need.

Close to 800 People Die Every Year Due to Chemical Exposure at Work

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, just under 800 people died as a result of chemical exposure in 2021. This number was up more than 18% from 2020. It makes our Miami workers comp attorneys wonder why the number has increased so much.

One of the reasons for the increase may be that more workers are being treated for this condition. Some of them may have been attributing their symptoms to something else. The bottom line is that anyone who gets sick from this sort of exposure deserves to be taken care of.

The Seriousness of Your Injuries May Depend on How You Were Exposed to the Chemical

Of course, there are workers who are exposed to chemicals all the time and don’t get sick. Others don’t realize there’s a problem at first. It isn’t until they finally see a doctor that they realize what is causing their sickness.

The problem with waiting is that it can make it difficult to prove that you’re entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Your Miami workers comp attorney needs to be able to prove the link between your injuries and your job.

Certain Chemicals Are Much More Harmful Than Others

Depending on the type of chemical you’re exposed to, you may experience serious symptoms. For example, if you breathe in ammonia gas directly, you can die. It only takes a few breaths before you lose consciousness and die.

On the other hand, if you’re exposed to chlorine, you may feel irritation in your throat and face. Even at high levels of exposure, you may only experience vomiting and chest pains.

Your Miami Workers Comp Attorney Can Help You File Your Claim

As soon as you realize that you’re sick, you need to let your employer know. You are required to report your injuries within thirty (30) days of your injury. With chemical exposure, it will be difficult for your Miami workers comp attorney to prove your case.

Once you have reported your injuries, you need to seek medical treatment. Obviously, if you are unable to report it immediately, get to the hospital. Your  Miami workers comp attorney can report it for you.

Just make sure that you are treated by a state-approved workers’ compensation doctor.

warning sign for toxic chemicals in workplace

Our Miami Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Have Handled All Kinds of Chemical Exposure Cases

Over the years, our Miami workers comp attorneys have helped clients suffering from exposure to a variety of chemicals. Some of the more common ones we have seen inflict injury include the chemicals discussed below.

Sulfuric Acid

Depending on the kind of work you do, there’s a good chance you’ll never be exposed to sulfuric acids. It is typically found in fertilizers. It is also heavily used in the oil industry.

If you work in either of these fields, you should have been warned of the dangers of sulfuric acid. If you happen to suffer from overexposure, you could suffer severe chemical burns to your skin. You can even go blind if the chemical finds its way to your eyes.

Chlorine Exposure

While chlorine exposure on its own doesn’t cause serious medical problems, it can if you’re exposed to it over time. For example, if you happen to work in the pool and spa industry, you may be exposed to chlorine often.

With prolonged exposure comes a multitude of symptoms, including the following.

  • Vomiting
  • Face and throat irritation
  • Chest pain

If you experience any of these symptoms, you need to get to the hospital immediately.

Ammonia

For people who work in the agricultural or food manufacturing industries, ammonia exposure is a real risk. While the chemical does smell, it is colorless. It can be hard to detect.

Some of the symptoms of ammonia poisoning include skin burns as well as irritation of the eyes, mouth, and throat. Breathing in the chemical directly can prove fatal. If you’re exposed to this chemical, make sure you call one of our Miami workers comp attorneys immediately.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Just as homeowners need to keep carbon monoxide detectors in their houses, employers need them in the workplace. People who work near gas-powered generators or furnaces are at great risk of succumbing to carbon monoxide poisoning.

Another way you can be exposed to carbon monoxide is by working on a forklift. People don’t realize that these machines can expose the driver and surrounding workers to deadly carbon monoxide.

Your Miami Workers Comp Attorney Must Prove the Exposure is Work-Related

For you to receive any workers’ compensation benefits, your attorney must prove that you were exposed to the chemical at work. This can be difficult because most of these gases are not detectable.

The other problem is that not everybody who works near these chemicals gets sick. Your employer may argue that your sickness must have been caused some other way. However, your Miami workers’ compensation lawyer will look for evidence to prove this isn’t the case.

Your Miami Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Can Negotiate a Settlement if You’re Left Disabled

If you learn that you are permanently disabled due to your chemical exposure, call our office right away. If you haven’t already retained a  Miami workers comp attorney, you should do so now.

Your attorney will make sure that you are compensated for any long-term issues you’re suffering from. If your injuries are serious enough, your Miami workers comp attorney may try to negotiate a lump sum settlement.

Talk to an Experienced Miami Workers’ Comp Attorney!

If you’ve been exposed to a dangerous chemical at work, you won’t be in any shape to deal with the insurance company. Ideally, you wouldn’t have to worry about this. Unfortunately, if you don’t have a Miami workers comp attorney, you may not get the benefits you deserve.

We think you should be able to focus on recovering from your injuries. While you do this, your Miami workers’ compensation lawyer will make sure your claim is handled properly.

We suggest you contact our office today so you can sit down with a seasoned Miami workers comp attorney right away. If you’re like most of our clients, you can’t afford to go without an income for weeks or months on end.

We do offer new clients a free, initial consultation. This means you can meet with an experienced lawyer to discuss your case free of charge.

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