Those who work in flooring installation face a number of hazards, but none is more dangerous than their exposure to formaldehyde in the products they install. Formaldehyde emissions from laminate wood products have been shown to “off-gas” and put both installers and homeowners at risk of personal injuries or illnesses. A personal injury attorney could help those have have been exposed seek the compensation they deserve for any resulting medical expenses.
The formaldehyde is present in the glue used to bind sawdust to the board. When stored at room temperature, the chemical vaporizes and can be inhaled. It’s especially problematic in brand new boards. Over time, the exposure homeowners experiences diminishes, but since installers are always around new boards, they are regularly exposed to the highest levels possible.
The work they do with wood flooring is also a problem. They’re cutting, sanding, and machining the boards to fit into a space, which creates dust and makes formaldehyde particles airborne. Though precautions should be taken, it’s impossible to completely reduce your exposure to formaldehyde if you work in the flooring industry.
Investigations are Already Underway Concerning Formaldehyde Exposure in the Flooring Industry
Problems with laminate wood flooring have increased in the last few decades as this type of flooring has increased in popularity. It wasn’t until an investigation into flooring made in China that knowledge of the risk associated with laminate products became widespread. Information from the investigation aired on the television and showed viewers a test of more than two dozen samples of laminate flooring from one of the country’s most popular distributors and installers.
Of the 31 products tested, 30 were over the emissions limit. Some of the products had more than 20 times the allowable amount.
Investigators have even gone to China where many of the flooring products are manufactured. They spoke to workers at three different factories and were told products were mislabeled as being compliant with regulations when they actually contained toxic levels of formaldehyde.
Information that can help you has already been collected. An attorney can help you gain access to this information and use it to build a case in your favor.
1. A Personal Injury Attorney Can Direct You to the Appropriate Medical Resources
Your doctor might have already diagnosed you with a formaldehyde-related health problem, but it is imperative you also see a doctor who has the proper experience to help you deal with your health issues and testify on your behalf. An attorney can direct you to resources and help you compile medical information that will prove beyond a doubt that health problems you’ve had are directly related to your exposure to formaldehyde while on the job.
2. A Missouri Personal Injury Attorney Can Identify Parties Responsible for Your Medical Issues
There were several steps involved in the manufacturing process, and many people were involved in the making of the products you used to install flooring. By the time the flooring made it to you, it had already passed through a number of hands, many of which were responsible for the safety of the product.
3. A Personal Injury Attorney will Help You Identify Those Who Were Aware of the Dangers Associated with Flooring Products
As someone injured on the job, you are eligible for compensation. In addition to workers’ compensation payments, you might have the opportunity to participate in a class action lawsuit against the people who were responsible for putting dangerous products into the hands of flooring installation specialists.
4. Your Health Issues Could Be Long-Term – or Worse
Exposure to formaldehyde can lead to a variety of health issues. Just a small amount of temporary exposure can cause nose, throat, and lung irritation. Many people experience symptoms similar to people who have been diagnosed with asthma.
Persistent long-term exposure is even worse. In addition to respiratory irritation, there are some who believe formaldehyde exposure can lead to the development of serious health issues, including cancer and Parkinson’s disease.
There are several different types of cancer with a potential link to formaldehyde exposure, including cancer of the nose, throat, sinus, lung, nasopharynx, and oropharynx. There is also some evidence that formaldehyde exposure might lead to leukemia or brain cancer.
There is also a potential link between long-term exposure to formaldehyde-containing products and the development of Parkinson’s disease. Parkinson’s is a progressive disease that affects the nervous system and causes tremors, rigidity, impaired balance, speech changes, and loss of automatic movements.
5. You Could Be Eligible for Financial Compensation – You Won’t Know Unless You Take Action
The primary reason you need to speak to a personal injury attorney is because you might be eligible for financial compensation.
If you’ve been experiencing any health issues or you have been diagnosed with a disease, you already know how expensive your medical bills are. Living a lifetime with a disease caused by your work environment is one of the greatest challenges you can face. In addition to the healthcare you’ll need, you might also lose your ability to work. Nobody should be forced to deal with the stress of how they will pay their medical bills when their health issues are related to a dangerous work environment.
Consult with an Experienced Missouri Personal Injury Attorney Today
The personal injury attorneys at Walton Telken Injury Attorneys have worked with people throughout Missouri, Illinois, and the surrounding area who have experienced health problems because they were exposed to formaldehyde while installing laminate wood flooring. We understand the severity of the health problems associated with these products, and we want to help you manage your legal issues.
We will help you establish your health issues are linked to your time on the job and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. You could be eligible for temporary partial disability, temporary total disability, permanent partial disability, or permanent total disability benefits.
If your injuries prevent you from returning to your job as they so often do in this instance, you could be eligible for even more compensation. You need to take the first step by contacting a personal injury attorney. We’ll ensure that no stone is unturned and that you have an experienced team of attorneys on your side. For more information or to schedule a consultation to discuss your on-the-job exposure to formaldehyde and dangerous flooring products, contact Walton Telken Injury Attorneys.