With many workplace injuries, you know that you’re hurt as soon as the incident takes place. You slip from the top of a ladder, fall and strike your head on the concrete floor below. You know that you need to go to the hospital and you probably have a concussion at the very least, but you could have a traumatic brain injury (TBI), a skull fracture or something more serious.
However, there are also a lot of other injuries and health issues that can slowly develop over time. For example, OSHA has very strict indoor air quality requirements because the air that you breathe can cause you serious harm. You probably won’t notice with every single breath that you take, but the cumulative effect can be massive when you’re at work for a minimum of eight hours every day.
What complications could you see?
In some cases, it can just be problematic if the heating and cooling systems haven’t been cleaned properly. You could be breathing in a lot of debris, including things that you’re allergic to.
In older buildings, a major issue that workers face is if there is asbestos in the insulation or any other materials. It may have gone undetected, but when those materials are damaged, workers can wind up inhaling asbestos particles that can lead to mesothelioma and other types of cancer.
You also simply want to think about the different types of chemicals being used at work. For instance, mixing some common cleaners, like bleach and ammonia, can create a potentially fatal compound. Workers who are exposed to chemicals need to have proper training and safety equipment.
These are just a few examples of how the air you breathe at work can cause harm, and you need to know about your legal options if something like this happens to you.