Fighting for Your Rights After a Cement Burn Accident
Cement is a common product used in a variety of building materials, such as concrete, plaster, and grout. Despite its prevalence, this material can cause serious injury to those who handle it. When wet cement comes into contact with the skin, it can cause burns or permanent disfigurement. If you are a construction worker and have developed burns or other skin conditions after working with cement, the cement burn attorneys at McKinley, Conger, Jolley & Galarneau, LLP, in Stockton, CA, can gather evidence and file a claim on your behalf.
The Hazards of Cement
Contact with cement can result in a variety of skin and health issues. When dry, cement mix contains calcium oxide, which is relatively harmless. However, when combined with water, it becomes calcium hydroxide, a highly alkaline chemical which can cause caustic burns.
In addition to burns, cement can cause a range of other health issues, including eye irritation and cell death. Another issue associated with cement is an inflammatory skin condition known as dermatitis which can cause symptoms such as:
Workers may develop a condition known as allergic contact dermatitis (ACD) due to consistent exposure to cement. ACD is long-lasting and can continue to affect an employee’s life many years after they stop working with the material.
Wet Cement Burns
Caustic burns, also known as alkaline burns, are especially hazardous because they can cause damage even after the cement is removed from the skin. This type of burn does not always produce immediate pain or discomfort. In many cases, serious, irreversible damage is caused before the victim is even aware of the injury. The strength of the alkaline chemicals in cement can result in third or fourth-degree burns. Signs of a wet cement burn include:
- Itching or dryness
- Skin discoloration causing a red or deep purple-blue color
- Blisters, ulcerations, or lesions
- Flaking or oozing skin
An alkaline burn can also cause welts, itchy red areas of skin with a white center. The symptoms of a cement burn may not appear for hours after the initial exposure. They generally worsen over time, so it is important to seek medical attention early if you believe you have come into contact with wet cement.
When to Hire an Attorney
Any individual who handles cement can suffer from chemical burns. Construction workers who consistently deal with wet cement are at a higher risk. In some cases, employers do not provide a safe work environment on construction sites. Inadequate safety training and equipment can increase the chance of exposure to wet cement.
Our team can assess the actions of your employer and determine if they were negligent in their responsibility to their employees. We can also help you fight for the full compensation you deserve from your insurance provider. Our goal is to not only help cover medical expenses but also ensure you are compensated for the pain and suffering you experienced.