Did You Suffer Chemical Burns At Work?
Caustic substances can damage human tissue. The damage is similar to a burn caused by heat or fire. Chemical burns occur when a person is exposed to a caustic substance by direct contact with the chemical or its fumes. This can happen with an accidental spill or splash of a chemical on the body or when a caustic substance is swallowed. Many chemicals used in industry can cause burns.
What Are The Symptoms Of Chemical Burns?
- Less severe chemical burns on the skin cause symptoms similar to first-degree burns. The skin becomes red, swollen and painful but does not develop blisters.
- Chemical burns may go deeper, in which case they can cause severe burns and blisters.
- In more severe cases, a strong acid or alkali can cause a full-thickness, third-degree burn with damage all the way through the skin layers.
Damage may also be caused to the eyes in addition to the skin.
What Causes Chemical Burns?
Although chemical burn injuries can occur at home, the risk is much higher in the workplace, particularly in manufacturing plants and other businesses that use large quantities of chemicals. Most chemical burns are caused by strong acids or strong bases, such as hydrochloric acid or sodium hydroxide. Bases liquefy cells while acids destroy and damage by coagulating cells (causing them to change to a solid or semisolid state). Prolonged exposure to strong acids or bases can severely damage human tissue and lead to scarring, disability or death. Other chemicals, such as oxidants and certain metals, can also cause chemical burns.
Common Products That Can Cause Chemical Burns
Anyone who keeps chemicals for any reason must store them safely to avoid accidents and label containers clearly in case of exposure. The following is a list of some common household and workplace products that can cause chemical burns:
- Toilet bowl cleaners
- Drain cleaners
- Car battery acid
- Swimming pool cleaners
- Oven cleaners
- Metal cleaners
- Paint thinners
- Concrete mix
Who Can Be Held Liable For Chemical Burn Injuries?
Chemical burns can occur in different settings, including the home, the workplace, research facilities and other environments. They may occur because of negligent storage, improper cleanup or unauthorized use of chemicals. Burns can also result from a lack of safety equipment or improper usage.
Liability for chemical burn injuries can depend on several factors. A business or individual may be liable to the victim if:
- The party owed a duty of care to the injured person.
- The party breached that duty of care.
- The breach of duty was the actual cause of the victim’s injuries.
- The victim suffered damages as a result of the breach of duty.
Compensation For Chemical Burn Injuries In Washington
If you or your loved one has suffered severe chemical burns through someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to file a claim for compensation. Our Seattle burn injury attorneys will thoroughly investigate your accident and assess the full extent of your losses. Monetary damages for chemical burns may be higher due to the severity of the injury and permanent scarring. Damages you may be entitled to claim might include:
- Medical expenses
- Ongoing medical costs
- Lost wages or earnings
- Loss of future income
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
Will You Have To Go To Court To Recover Compensation?
At Pendergast Law, we are able to resolve more than 90% of the cases we handle without filing lawsuits. However, if necessary, our attorneys have the trial experience to take your case to court and win. If you have been a victim of a chemical burn injury, call us toll-free at 888-539-9211 to schedule a free consultation. Our Seattle personal injury lawyers can explain your options under the law.