Hazards of the Job: Workers’ Compensation for Hazardous Materials Workers

February 16, 2016

Hazardous materials workers face some of the most dangerous working conditions in the world. These conditions apply to anyone who has to handle HAZMAT as a part of their job. Nearly every industry involves some form of hazardous materials that can cause serious injury or illness.

Some industries are more likely to encounter hazardous materials than others. People who worked in shipyards or Navy yards are at risk, as are those who work in the medical field and deal with blood samples (or other medical waste). However, construction and medical workers are most likely to be exposed on a daily basis. HAZMAT removal workers are exposed daily, and can suffer serious injuries and lifelong illnesses when proper safety precautions are not observed.

Your employer is required to maintain a safe work environment, but hazardous materials handling includes an inherent degree of risk. Using protective suits and breathing masks can reduce the chance of an accident but can never eliminate it completely. The most common types of HAZMAT on the job can include, but are not limited to:

  • Asbestos
  • Nuclear and radioactive waste
  • Arsenic
  • Lead and other heavy metals
  • Flammable, corrosive, toxic, or reactive chemicals
  • Biohazard and waste materials

HAZMAT injuries are often serious and require intensive medical treatment. When workers are injured on the job, workers’ compensation can help defray the costs of expensive treatment. However, HAZMAT injuries are not limited to the removal of those materials. Hazardous materials can injure anyone, from science teachers to nurses and doctors to construction workers.

If you have been injured by exposure to hazardous materials on the job, you are entitled to compensation. Workers’ compensation protects you and your family from expensive medical treatment and lost work time. Unfortunately, filing a claim can be extremely difficult without proper documentation and knowledge of workers’ compensation law.

Workers’ compensation claims can require depositions, cross examination by defending attorneys, sworn testimony, multiple court appearances and a vast knowledge of the governing laws that protect you as an employee in the state of Pennsylvania. This is why it is so important to have an attorney that is familiar with the Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation Act and has handled thousands of cases, like the Philadelphia workers’ compensation lawyers at Larry Pitt & Associates. Contact us today for a free consultation. We proudly serve clients throughout Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery Counties.