Hazardous chemicals can be found in countless places in Texas. Almost every type of heavy machinery in the workplace — from cars to manufacturing equipment — uses some type of hazardous chemical.
Additionally, many household products include hazardous, potentially flammable chemicals. It’s likely that half the cleaning products in your bathroom or closet are potentially hazardous. And when one of these chemicals causes a fire, it creates a more dangerous type of fire than typical flames.
Chemical fires can cause serious injuries that may require indefinite treatment.
Immediate Physical Injuries From Chemical Fires
In some ways, chemical fires are similar to other types of fire. They burn hot enough to injure exposed skin and produce smoke. However, because the fire results from a chemical, these types of fires also release dangerous chemicals in the smoke that aren’t found in other types of fires.
Some of the immediate physical injuries caused by chemical fires include:
- Chemical burns
- Eye irritation or infection
- Nausea or vomiting
- Headaches and lightheadedness
- Difficulty breathing
Typically, you should go to the hospital as soon as possible if you suffer any type of injury from a chemical fire. While some injuries only have short-term effects, many have long-term health implications.
Long-Term Health Implications After Chemical Fire Exposure
The long-term health implications of chemical fire exposure can be quite extensive. The following types of injuries could result in years or even decades of treatment:
Second- and Third-Degree Burns
The flames from chemical fires are often more dangerous than those from normal fires. They may burn hotter and can be harder to put out. If you pour water on a chemical fire, it can even make the fire worse.
Because the flames are more dangerous, if you get burned by a chemical fire, you are more likely to suffer second- or third-degree burns. These burns extend beyond outer skin levels, causing damage to the soft tissue below. In some cases, they will even destroy skin or soft tissue, making it impossible for your body to recover naturally.
These injuries frequently require multiple surgeries over years to recover from — and the scars can last a lifetime.
Cancer-Causing Chemical Inhalation
The other major danger from chemical fires in Texas is exposure to cancer-causing chemicals. When these chemicals burn, the cancer-causing agents are in the smoke. If you inhale even small amounts of this smoke, those agents can enter your body and stay there permanently.
Unfortunately, there is little that medical science can do to remove these chemicals from your body. Instead, doctors will usually have to watch closely for signs of cancer and treat the symptoms as they arise. As with any type of cancer, treatment is unpleasant, and the condition could be fatal.
Legal Recourse for Victims of Chemical Fire Injuries
If you have been harmed by a chemical fire, you may have legal options, especially if you were harmed at work. Generally, chemical fires are a result of negligence. Your workplace might use dangerous chemicals without proper safety procedures, or your landlord might store chemicals in a location that isn’t safe.
This means that if you were injured in a chemical fire that was the fault of another party, you could file a lawsuit to get compensation for the harm you suffered. It’s important to contact a burn injury law firm as soon as you are injured so that a qualified attorney can investigate the facts.
Depending on the circumstances of the fire and the severity of your injuries, you may be eligible to receive compensation for a lifetime of treatment, lost wages, and other losses.
What Is the Difference Between a Dry Chemical Fire Suppressor and a Wet Chemical Fire Suppressor?
Wet chemical fire suppressors use a liquid substance that is primarily most effective against grease fires, particularly those that occur in kitchens. Dry chemical fire suppressors combat a much wider range of fire types, including chemical and electrical fires.
Any place that stores hazardous chemicals should have dry chemical fire suppressors readily available and should instruct anyone who lives or works in the location on how to use them.
By failing to make these extinguishers available or train employees on how to use them, the facility owner may be responsible for injuries caused by a chemical fire.
Contact Dunn Sheehan Immediately After a Severe Chemical Burn
Chemical fires can cause extensive and permanent damage to your body. If you know or suspect you were harmed, it is vital to seek medical attention and consult with a skilled personal injury attorney immediately.
As a trial firm with a mission to provide exceptional service to every client, Dunn Sheehan can fight aggressively to secure the compensation you deserve for your injuries in Dallas. Contact us to schedule your free consultation today.