Exposure to toxic chemicals can occur in many different settings, placing anyone at risk for a chemical exposure injury at some point in their lifetime. In effort to reduce chemical exposure injuries throughout the country, Congress passed the Frank F. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21 st Century Act, mandating that the most dangerous chemicals be identified. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently begun its risk evaluation process, the first step in determining which chemicals pose the greatest safety risk to the public.
Experts have identified over 40,000 active chemicals in the environment. Evaluating the safety of commonly used chemicals begins by prioritizing which chemicals should be studied further. The EPA is seeking public input in deciding which chemicals should first undergo risk evaluation as part of its chemical prioritization process.
Among the 40 listed chemicals that may be considered for high priority classification are:
By the end of 2019, the EPA must designate 20 chemicals for inclusion on the high priority risk evaluation list. The public has three months to make comments on which listed chemicals should receive priority classification.
At the conclusion of the evaluation process, a number of chemicals will receive a “high priority” classification requiring an extensive three-year risk evaluation. Chemicals with high priority designations typically are known human carcinogens and pose high acute or chronic toxicity risks. The EPA screening is supposed to identify chemicals with: high hazard and exposure potential; persistent accumulation in the environment; significant volume of manufacturing or processing; or are stored near significant drinking water sources. Information gained from the risk evaluation process will be published to allow consumers to make more informed decisions about the use and management of these chemicals.
Exposure to toxic chemicals can result in serious injuries, including severe burns that may result in permanent disability. While a first- or second-degree burn may not produce long term damage, a third- or fourth-degree burn can result in permanent scarring, damage to nerve endings, destruction of muscles or tendons, bone damage, and death. Other types of chemcial exposure injuries include rashes, throat injury, lung damage, eye injuries (including loss of vision), and neurological damage.
Individuals exposed to toxic chemicals may develop serious and permanent injuries requiring extensive medical treatment. In addition to the costs of physician or hospital visits, medications, occupational or physical therapy, and diagnostic testing, many injured individuals are unable to work. By filing a toxic tort claim against the parties responsible for the chemical exposure, injured individuals may obtain compensation for these medical costs, lost wages, and damages for pain and suffering. With the assistance of an experienced Pennsylvania environmental lawyer, injured individuals and their families may receive the financial compensation needed during this difficult time.
If you or a loved has suffered an injury after a chemical exposure, an experienced Philadelphia environmental contamination lawyer at Williams Cedar can help you obtain the maximum amount of compensation to which you are entitled. Our offices are conveniently located in Philadelphia and Haddonfield, New Jersey, to assist chemical exposure victims throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey. To schedule a confidential consultation with an environmental toxic tort lawyer today, call us at 215-557-0099 or 856-470-9777 or contact us online.