What to do about an environmental hazard in the workplace?

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What to do about an environmental hazard in the workplace?

My husband works in a plant that uses a unknown mixture “x”. We have however found out that it contains sodium nitrate and he is not required to wear a mask goggles or even pants; he wears shorts and short sleeve shirts. Also the warehouse has no air conditioning.

Asked on May 19, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There are several different things to try:

1) Contact OSHA, the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which should be able to tell you--or point you to information about--the hazards, if any, of sodium nitrate, approriate safety precautions, etc. If there is an issue, OSHA may also take issue.

2) You could also contact a state level agency--try the state dept. of health and/or dept. of labor.

3) You could speak with an attorney who handles "toxic tort" cases or workplace safety/injury cases, to see if there might be a cause of action or other legal recourse. (If your husband has been fortunate enough to not be injured, there may be nothing to sue over; in that case, going to a government agency may be the better bet.)

Good luck.


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