One of the most common burn hazards found in workplaces is chemical burns. It can cause serious injuries as well as enduring pain. Companies or employers are accountable for justifying their employees’ exposure to chemicals. These harmful substances may cause chemical burn injury and endanger workers’ lives.
The company or employer needs to ensure the protection of their workers. Otherwise, they will face penalty and the injured person will claim a worker’s compensation due to chemical burn injury. A worker’s compensation lawyer is a big help for the injured worker to get his rightful compensation.
What is Chemical Burn?
A chemical burn is an inflammation and damage to human tissue due to chemical exposure. Usually, it is through direct contact with the substance itself or its emitted vapors.
When your eyes or skin come in contact with a hazardous chemical, you’ll likely to have chemical burns and skin irritations. You’ll feel pain, burning sensations, numbness in the affected area, or even loss of vision.
Chemical burns also occur in the stomach when harmful chemicals become ingested accidentally or intentionally. Chemical leakage which produces toxic gases is also considered as chemical burns. The inhaled dangerous fumes can result in burns to the throat, sinus, and breathing capabilities.
Dangers in the Workplace
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has provided well-defined rules and procedures regarding fire and burn safety. Additionally, the federal agency has set standards with the usage and handling of hazardous chemicals and gases to prevent chemical burn injury.
Chemical burn injury is one of the most common medical carelessness hazards that occur in the workplace. Such products that consist of acid or harsh chemicals are frequently used in different industries. This includes construction, mining, beauty, agriculture, cleaning, and manufacturing.
If the chemicals have no proper handling, it can cause massive tissue degeneration and serious pain. Chemical burns are exceedingly painful that can result in deformity, marring, and lasting discomfort. If the employer proves to be negligent, a worker who suffered a chemical injury can file a compensation claim.
Companies become liable when workers sustained chemical burn injury. Accidents and injuries occur while handling the chemicals which usually happen when workers don’t have the proper training. Moreover, it can cause death in the workplace if safety rules aren’t implemented.
Types of Chemical Burns
The doctor will categorize the chemical burn based on the extent of the injury as well as the depth. A superficial burn, also known as the first-degree burn, injures the topmost layer of the skin or epidermis. The partial-thickness injury or dermal injury is formerly known as the second-degree burn. It’s a damage to the second layer of the skin or dermis. The full-thickness injury also called third-degree burn, is an affliction to the third layer of the skin or subcutaneous tissue.
Most chemical burns are due to the mishandling of acids and bases. These substances are mostly found on harmful chemicals used in the workplace, school, or even at home.
Determining Chemical Burn Injury Hazards
When you’re exposed to strong acids and bases, you’re at risk of having substantial burns even for a short period. Employers are responsible for determining chemicals that may cause chemical burn injury. These chemicals need to have clear labels and proper storage.
Below are some of the chemicals most commonly used in the workplace. Workers need to use it with utmost caution to prevent incurring chemical burn injury.
– Calcium hypochlorite
– Hydrochloric acid
– Hydrofluoric acid
– Potassium hydroxide
– Nitric acid
– Sodium hypochlorite
– Sodium hydroxide
– Phosphoric acid
– Muriatic acid
Employer’s Responsibility to Workers for Preventing Chemical Burn Injury
If your work involves chemicals, your employer needs to ensure your safety and other workers. Safety precautions need implementation such as:
- Training the staff regarding the proper handling and chemical usage
- Proper storage of chemicals in secured facilities
- Providing workers with the proper equipment and clothing including aprons, face masks, gloves, breathing apparatus, and splatter guards
- Strict access to hazardous chemicals
Also, it’s the employer’s obligation to provide his employees with a safe working environment such as:
- Proper ventilation of the work area
- Immediate access to first aid facilities for washing eyes, bandages, and burn cream
- Putting up relevant warning signs and stickers
Filing a Chemical Burn Injury Claim
If you suffered a chemical burn injury in the workplace, you may file a worker’s compensation claim. You’ll have a strong case, especially if the cause of your injury is due to the company or employer’s negligence. In case the company didn’t acknowledge your claim, a worker’s compensation lawyer from the ODG Law Group can help you.
We, at the Oktanyan Der-Grigorian Law Group Inc., have committed to helping you secure your financial assistance and compensation. You’ll need this for your fast recovery from a work-related injury. We’ll help you by supporting and protecting your emotional, physical, and financial well-being.
We won’t ask for a fee until we win your case. You can reach us at (818) 975-3080 and we’ll provide you with a free case evaluation. We’re here to help you in every step of the way.