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How Can Steel Mill Workers Be Affected by Toxic Chemical Exposure?

Posted on in Personal Injury

Wexford Personal Injury LawyerIndustrial workers face a number of risks on a daily basis. When working around large, heavy equipment, the possibility of injuries is ever-present, and workers follow multiple safety practices to prevent accidents. However, in addition to the possibility of injuries in workplace accidents, workers at steel mills and similar facilities may also suffer harm after being exposed to toxic chemicals. These exposures may occur because of chemical spills, but in many cases, ongoing exposure over multiple months or years of work can lead to significant health issues. Workers who have been affected by toxic chemicals will need to understand their legal options and determine whether they can receive compensation for their injuries.

Dangerous Chemicals That May Cause Harm to Workers in Steel Mills

Those who work in the metal production industry deal with hazardous chemicals and substances on a regular basis. Some chemicals that may cause workers to suffer injuries include:

  • Arsenic - Compounds containing this substance may be used in steel production, potentially exposing workers to health risks. Inorganic arsenic compounds are carcinogenic, and they may lead to lung cancer, bladder cancer, skin cancer, kidney cancer, liver cancer, or prostate cancer. Exposure to low levels of arsenic over time can lead to issues such as damage to the liver and kidneys, decreased red and white blood cells, and an increased risk of infections.

  • Ethylene oxide - This chemical is commonly used in industrial production, and it can lead to issues such as respiratory problems, neurological disorders, damage to the reproductive system, and cancer.

  • Methylene chloride - This chemical may be used to clean and degrease metal. It may cause cancer, as well as damage to the cardiovascular system, nervous system, or liver.

  • Hexavalent chromium - This metal is often used as an alloy during metal production, and it may become airborne and be inhaled by workers. Exposure to this substance can cause lung cancer, dermatitis, and other types of skin irritation, asthma, and damage to the eyes, eardrums, kidneys, or liver.

  • Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons - These substances may be released when burning oil or gas to operate furnaces. Inhalation or other types of exposure may lead to lung disorders such as pneumoconiosis, lung cancer, skin cancer, or damage to the liver or kidneys.

  • Organic binder materials - Chemicals such as formaldehyde and phenol may be used during the mixing or binding of materials. Exposure to these chemicals can lead to lung damage and other respiratory issues.

Contact Our Wexford Toxic Chemical Exposure Attorneys

Steel mill workers should be provided with the proper equipment to protect them from harm. Unfortunately, many workers do not receive the protections they need, and they may be exposed to multiple types of dangerous substances. At Colianni & Colianni, LLC, we work with people who have suffered injuries because of toxic chemical exposure, and we fight to make sure the companies responsible for these injuries will be held liable for the harm caused to victims. Contact our Pittsburgh toxic tort lawyers at 412-680-7877 to arrange a free consultation today.

 

Sources:

https://safetymanagement.eku.edu/blog/top-hazardous-materials-in-american-industries/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK304429/

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