Recently, the residents of East Palestine and Columbiana County, Ohio, were affected by a train derailment that resulted in toxic chemicals being released into the air and water. The incident resulted in mandatory evacuations, lost wages, property damage, and a range of current and future health problems for the affected residents. In this article, we will explore the potential legal claims that these residents may have in light of this unfortunate event.
Personal Injury Claims
The release of toxic chemicals into the air and water has raised concerns about the health impacts on the affected residents. If residents experience current or future health problems as a result of the incident, they may have a personal injury claim against the responsible parties. In order to succeed with such a claim, residents will need to prove that their health problems were caused by exposure to the toxic chemicals. This may involve retaining the services of medical experts who can provide expert testimony on the causal link between the exposure and the health problems.
Effects of Being Exposed to Hazardous Waste and Chemicals
Hazardous waste and chemicals spilled after the train derailment include:
- Vinyl chloride
- Ethylene glycol monobutyl ether
- Butyl acrylate
- Ethylhexyl acrylate
Ohio authorities decided to slowly release and burn the vinyl chloride, which, when burned, breaks down into hydrogen chloride and phosgene. If exposed to phosgene, it can smell like cut hay and can cause coughing when inhaled. Overexposure to vinyl chloride over time could increase the risk of liver damage, liver cancer, lung cancer and leukemia.
After returning to their homes, residents in the surrounding area may also experience various symptoms associated with toxic chemical exposure. Immediate symptoms of being exposure to vinyl chloride include headaches and dizziness. Exposure to other chemicals involved in the spill may result in symptoms like irritation of the nose and eyes and breathing difficulties. Various other symptoms related to chemicals in the spill might occur due to exposure at high levels over a long period of time.
If you are experiencing any symptoms from chemical exposure, you should contact your doctor immediately.
Lost Wages and Business Interruptions
For those who were forced to evacuate their homes, the incident may have resulted in lost wages, as well as business interruptions for those who run small businesses in the affected areas. In such cases, residents may have a claim for compensation for lost wages and business income.
Many residents in the affected areas may have experienced property damage as a result of the train derailment. Whether it be damage to homes, vehicles, or personal property, residents may have a legal claim for compensation for such damages. In order to succeed with such a claim, residents will need to provide evidence of the damage and the cost of repairing or replacing the damaged property.
Reach Out to an Experienced Attorney for Help with Your Claim
The train derailment in East Palestine and Columbiana County, Ohio, has resulted in a range of legal claims for the affected residents. Whether it be for lost wages, business interruptions, property damage, or personal injury, residents may be entitled to compensation from the responsible parties.
If you or a loved one has been affected by this incident, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your legal rights and options. The lawyers at Bordas & Bordas have extensive experience in handling complex personal injury cases, and are committed to advocating on behalf of the residents of East Palestine, Columbiana County and surrounding areas.