Ohio worker suffers burns after workplace chemical fire

by Andrew Bainbridge | Aug 13, 2013 | Workplace Accidents and Injuries

Workplace dangers take many forms. They can be a minor safety violation, a wet floor, a vehicle accident, or something more extreme like a building collapse or a deadly equipment malfunction. But in one recent Ohio workplace accident, a worker was injured by a chemical fire.

There, a container of Dimethyl Ether, a renewable resource used as a propane replacement in the manufacturing process, caught fire at a freight company and spread to several nearby trailers owned by the company. According to eyewitnesses, a fireball exploded out of one of the trailers. The injured worker suffered burns to his face and was immediately rushed to the hospital. Ohio OSHA workers and hazmat crews responded to the fire, which was allowed to burn out, and the investigation into the accident’s cause continues.

When a worker like the one in this case is injured, he may face disfigurement and physical impairment that not only disallows him from working, but puts his entire life on hold. To make coping with these injuries even worse, expensive medical care can leave the individual in a dire financial circumstance. Such a worker may choose to file a workers’ compensation claim in an attempt to receive medical benefits and loss of wages, but all too often these claims are denied by insurance companies.

If this happens, then a worker should not hesitate to contact a workers’ compensation attorney. A competent attorney may be able to help the worker sue his employer and his employer’s insurance to compel them to pay for the worker’s damages. To obtain compensation, the worker must prove the accident happened within the scope of employment and the injuries were caused by that accident.

Once a case is won, then the worker may receive awards to help pay medical expenses and lost wages. Then, hopefully, the worker can focus on getting his life back and reaching a full recovery. In addition, these lawsuits put employers on notice that safety must be a top priority in the workplace, and anything less will not be tolerated.

Source: News Channel 5 ABC, “1 inured in YRC Freight chemical fire that caused evacuations of Copley day care, business,” Colleen Seitz and Bob Jones, August 9, 2013

Tags: disfigurement loss of wages medical benefits medical care medical expenses physical impairment safety violation workers' compensation claim