Hurricane Sandy continues to leave devastation in her wake, this time in the form of mold. Many of the areas that have been greatly impacted by the hurricane are now facing a potentially deadly epidemic of mold contamination and exposure.
One of the greatest concerns of government officials in the impacted East Coast region is how to protect and care for the volunteers and workers charged with clean-up duties. City officials are worried about potential workers’ compensation and health related lawsuits that may result from inadequate training, protection, and understanding of the issue at hand. This is not without good reason too. The fears stem from the lawsuits that have been coming out of the aftermaths of 9/11 for years.
Perhaps of even greater concern for the volunteers, workers, and even citizens themselves is the fact that there are no federal standards for safely removing the mold that is contaminating the areas. OSHA has only provided guidelines, but many questions still remain surrounding these guidelines. Questions such as who should be involved in the clean-up, what type of training should they have, and how do we best protect them? There are also questions surrounding best practices for removal of the mold itself.
With all of these questions remaining and time and manpower to address the issue at short supply, it is no wonder officials are concerned about what health concerns and lawsuits may determine Sandy’s lasting legacy.
If you find yourself suffering from any hazards that you have encountered in the workplace and in need of an attorney to assist you in further deciphering your legal options, please contact a personal injury attorney.
Source: Huffington Post, “Sandy Cleanup Could Lead to Illness, Litigation for Workers,” Lynne Peeples, Dec. 5, 2012