Exposure to toxic chemicals on the job is an unfortunate risk for people who work in the construction industry. Whether parties are building, repairing, renovating or demolishing structures, they can face devastating illnesses if exposed to substances like asbestos and lead on the job.
Misinformation and deceit are common reasons why workers find themselves struggling with life-threatening illnesses long after they can do anything to protect themselves.
Who has something to hide?
Various parties have reason to conceal the presence of toxic materials on a site.
Employers may not want or be able to provide the necessary safety gear to protect workers. Property owners may not want to go through the legal and logistical red tape of okaying or abating potentially harmful substances to complete a job. Product manufacturers or suppliers may prefer to put their bottom line ahead of worker safety.
And it’s not just workers on the job site that face the catastrophic consequences of toxic exposure. Students and staff in one school district learned that they had been exposed to water contaminated with lead and dangerous levels of asbestos for at least a decade. School officials who allegedly knew about the toxic materials and failed to address it now face felony charges.
Holding parties responsible
Often, people make poor decisions related to toxic exposure for financial reasons. They may not want to spend money to repair the problem or lose a lucrative contract.
Whatever the reason may be, though, these people can be knowingly putting workers in harm’s way. In many cases, they hope that people will never realize they have been exposed or that workers won’t understand just how dangerous their situation may be.
The fact is that substances like asbestos and lead have been linked to several severe conditions, from cancer to brain damage, and those responsible for exposure can be held accountable. However, it can be difficult for people to find the connection between exposure to harmful agents and their illness when parties do not disclose the presence of hazardous materials.
Thus, many parties suffering from exposure to toxic substances on the job work with attorneys who can help them identify at-fault parties and navigate the legal process to file a claim.