Lead Exposure in the Workplace and Its Adverse Effects

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has estimated that approximately 838,000 workers in the construction industry could be exposed to lead at any time. There are dangers in this because lead enters the body through inhalation from breathing in lead-containing dust and fumes at work. Construction workers are exposed to lead during the removal, renovation, or demolition of structures painted with lead pigments and could also be exposed during installation, maintenance, or demolition of lead pipes and fittings.

Employers must work to protect employees because lead can damage the central nervous system, cardiovascular system, reproductive system, kidneys, and more – and can also be toxic to a person. Lead exposure can even go as far as to harm their children’s development. The symptoms of chronic overexposure include loss of appetite or nausea, excessive tiredness, severe abdominal pain, metallic taste in the mouth, weakness, irritability, muscle and joint pain, insomnia, dizziness, and more.

Protective Measures

Luckily, the risk of lead poisoning can be reduced by removing the lead from the workplace. Protective procedures that should be implemented by your employer include local exhaust ventilation through hoods and ducts, personal protective equipment being supplies, and personal hygiene. All employers must provide equipment that can prevent these illnesses such as gloves, goggles, clothing protection, boots, and respirators if necessary.

Damages if You Have Been Exposed to Lead 

If you have been exposed to lead and you are now a worker who is suffering the effects of poisoning, you may be feeling at a loss. Some of these effects can prove deadly, which means that you could be suffering exhausting daily issues relating to your exposure. In these cases, workers’ compensation could pay for your medical expenses and lost income. However, if you have suffered from emotional damages due to your exposure and what you have been through, this will usually lead to a lawsuit. You are entitled to damages and we can help. We understand how lead poisoning can have a negative impact on your life for time to come. Call us today for more information on how we can help you.