Sheri Farley worked for Royale Comfort Seating for about five years. She and about a dozen other workers glued foam cushions together for chairs and couches. Farley eventually developed severe nerve damage from breathing in the glue fumes. As a result, Farley's feet are swollen and she has a hard time balancing. She cannot stand or sit for more than 20 minutes without pain screaming down her spine and up her legs.
The chemical she handled – known as n-propyl bromide (nPB) – is also used by many workers in auto body shops, dry-cleaners, and electronics manufacturing plants across the country. When inhaled at low levels over long periods, nPB has been known to cause neurological damage and infertility. Despite knowing this fact, managers at Royale Comfort Seating still exposed gluers to high nPB levels, failed to provide respirators, and turned off fans meant to vent fumes. They have not switched from nPB glues because alternatives did not work well, were sometimes more dangerous, and were usually more expensive.
Each year, nearly 200,000 American workers are affected by toxic workplace air. Many times, the cost of complying with health and safety rules outweigh the penalties for breaking them. Therefore, companies take a 'catch me if you can' approach and put their workers at risk for injury and illness.
If you've been injured by inhaling fumes at work, you may not think you are eligible for workers' comp benefits. However, workers' compensation claims are not just for specific accidents. You can also receive benefits if your injury or illness developed over a long period of time. For either type of injury, you are entitled to fully paid medical care, wage compensation, and a cash settlement for your injuries.
With an occupational exposure, you can't pinpoint the date and time you were injured. This can make it difficult to prove that your NJ work injury is related to your job. It's a good idea to have an experienced NJ workers' comp lawyer in your corner. Manfred Ricciardelli knows how these cases work. He will fight to get you the benefits you need to get your life back on track. Call us at 973-285-1100 or fill out our online contact form to schedule your free initial consultation.
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