According to a New York State Department of Health report, a toxic substance can be defined as any substance that causes “harm [when it] enters or contacts the body.” Exposure to toxic substances can result in several long-term, life-threatening illnesses — and even fatality. In a 2018 United Nations (UN) study, researchers estimated that one worker dies from toxic substance exposure every 30 seconds. On a global scale, this amounts to almost 2.8 million worker deaths per year.
Despite clear laws outlining employers’ obligation to maintain a reasonably safe work environment, many laborers are still routinely exposed to toxic substances that could have long-term negative effects on their health. According to the UN report, one of the most common illnesses exposed workers develop is cancer, which amounts to approximately 70% of all diseases in the workplace.
Some of the most common toxic substances that laborers are exposed to are:
- Toxic industrial chemicals
- Petroleum products
- Caustic substances
- Heavy metals like mercury, lead, cadmium, and aluminum
While exposure to some listed substances can almost immediately result in negative health effects, it may take years to discover those effects. In many tragic cases, workers do not even realize they are sick before it is too late. However, even in these cases, workers and their families and loved ones deserve their right to pursue legal action.
Contact a New York Toxic Substance Exposure Lawyer
If you or a loved one has developed a long-term, life-threatening illness due to exposure to toxic substances in the workplace, turn to an experienced work injury lawyer to discuss your rights. Our experienced and compassionate attorneys will guide you through the necessary steps to determine liability and get you the compensation you deserve. To discuss the potential merits of legal action in your case, contact our offices by calling (212) 779-0057 today.