Chemicals are a necessary part of our everyday lives, but accidents involving chemicals can be extremely serious.

Depending on the chemicals involved and other factors, chemical burn accidents can result in devastating injuries. A chemical spilled or splashed into the eyes can cause blindness while a spill on the skin could cause severe burns.

If you’ve been injured in an accident involving chemicals, contact the chemical burn accident attorneys at Lundy Law.

Why Are Chemical Burns So Dangerous in Pennsylvania

Chemicals consist of acids or bases which the Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) says can both cause significant damage to skin.

Acids can be washed off with a brief rinse in most cases, but bases tend to cause more severe damage and must be rinsed for more than 20 minutes. According to medical professionals, acids coagulate cells and can cause nerve damage while bases liquefy cells.

Consequences of Chemical Burn Injuries may include:

• Scars and disfigurement
• Extensive emotional and psychological damage
• Infection – burns can damage the skin’s protective barrier

Types of Chemicals That Burn

Although any number of chemicals can cause a burn, there are some that more commonly cause workplace injuries than others.

Sulfuric acid is found in battery fluid, drain cleaners and fertilizers, while hydrochloric acid is found in swimming pool chemicals. Hydrofluoric acid has been reported as causing burns when being used in agriculture or petroleum refining. Disinfectants, detergents and metal cleaners may contain phosphoric acid while sodium or potassium hydroxide found in oven cleaners may also cause burns.

The extent of injury depends on how strong the chemical was, where it contacted the body and the length of time someone is exposed to the chemical. Swallowing, inhaling or a chemical penetrating the skin can lead to very serious injuries and should be treated immediately.

Chemicals commonly used in workplaces that may cause burn injuries include:

  • Ammonia
  • Calcium hypochlorite
  • Hydrochloric acid
  • Hydrofluoric acid
  • Muriatic acid
  • Nitric acid
  • Phosphoric acid
  • Potassium hydroxide
  • Sodium hydroxide
  • Sodium hypochlorite

Who Is At Risk of a Chemical Burn Accident?

Anyone is at risk of being injured by chemicals as they exist in both the home and the workplace. However, the majority of people who report injury from chemicals are those who work in industrial and manufacturing facilities.

Laboratory employees, processing plant workers and maintenance crews are often exposed to chemicals regularly in their line of work. What potentially makes the situation worse is that you may not know you’ve suffered a chemical burn because the reaction may not become apparent until later. If you were injured by a chemical at work, you are entitled to workers’ compensation under Pennsylvania law, but you could be eligible for additional compensation.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a chemical, or a loved one has died of injuries they received after a chemical accident, contact Lundy Law today to learn what rights you may have.
Lundy Law can help guide you through the workers’ comp process and review your case to see if you are eligible for additional compensation. You can arrange your free consultation by completing our form or by calling us at 1-800-Lundy Law.

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