Protecting our health is always an essential priority to living productive lives. This typically means going to regular check-ups at the doctor and seeking treatment if we’re not feeling well. Another way to protect our health is by making the environment safe. Many laws are in place to protect our environment and prevent it from becoming dangerous to us. However, when certain people or entities don’t follow the laws and regulations, they can put the health and wellbeing of others at risk. That’s where our Fayetteville environmental lawyers may be able to help.
McMath Woods P.A. serves Arkansas citizens who have been wrongfully injured. If you have been diagnosed with an illness or have lost a loved one due to a preventable environmental hazard, we’ll do everything we can to get justice.
Which Industries Need Environmental Regulations?
A major part of keeping the environment safe means placing regulations on industries that could produce dangerous chemicals. Companies are supposed to follow protocols that state how to use chemicals, when they can use chemicals, and how to dispose of them. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) details the laws the following industries need to follow:
- Electric Utilities
- Oil and Gas
The agricultural industry works with harmful chemicals like pesticides. They need to adhere to regulations that keep the air, water, and soil safe. If they work with animals, they also need to have ways to prevent animal waste from contaminating groundwater.
Automotive industry workers come into contact with metals and cleaning solvents, which can be harmful. The EPA also has rules for how to properly get rid of waste. For example, aluminum is a substance used when building vehicles like light trucks and utility vehicles. The aluminum requires a coating process that produces waste. While there was an amendment to not classify that waste as hazardous, those in the industry cannot put the waste outside and it needs to be shipped to a landfill that’s equipped to handle the waste without threatening the environment.
Our infrastructure always needs updates. Construction on buildings and roads seem to be happening constantly. However, if construction companies aren’t careful, they could be exposing workers and others in the area to harmful chemicals. Common hazards they come into contact with include asbestos and lead. They need to have the tools, training, and knowledge to handle those substances.
The responsibilities of electric utilities include controlling mercury from getting into the air from power plants, properly disposing of fossil fuel combustion waste, and minimizing the impact of cooling water intake structures on local rivers and lakes.
Oil and gas can produce a number of hazardous air pollutants, but the EPA has regulations to reduce these emissions, as well as manage waste from crude oil, natural gas, and wastewater discharges.
Transportation covers moving passengers and cargo, warehousing, sightseeing, and more. This applies to traveling in aircraft, Diesel boats, and locomotives. Those in charge of any form of transportation need to follow EPA regulations so they aren’t releasing too many toxic chemicals into the air and water.
These industries all have myriad rules to follow and when they don’t, they can cause major health problems to innocent people. Our lawyers will investigate how the party harmed the environment and caused your illness or injury.
How Can Pollution Harm You?
When dangerous chemicals seep into the environment, you may not recognize the effects on your health for a while. It could take years for symptoms of an illness to develop.
Let’s look into what happens when toxic chemicals got into the air. The EPA lists the following health conditions as their greatest concerns:
- Asthma, Chronic Bronchitis
- Birth Defects, Miscarriages
- Cough, Throat Irritation
- Nervous System Damage
- Developmental Problems in Children
- Skin Rashes
- Kidney, Liver Damage
Treatment for these illnesses can be expensive. You may be looking at a future of long-term treatment. Your illness could also be preventing you from returning to work. As you’re dealing with all this, you also are supposed to keep up with other financial responsibilities.
Some of the illnesses may lead to an early death. If you’ve lost a loved one because of an environmentally-caused illness, you’re dealing with grief as well as the loss of someone you may have depended on financially. You shouldn’t have to worry about how you’re going to afford mortgage bills when past medical expenses start arriving in the mail. This can be too much to handle on your own, which is why our lawyers will help you get the compensation you deserve.
Our Lawyers Are Here for You
The lawyers at McMath Woods P.A. are passionate about environmental litigation and standing up for those whose lives have been put on hold because of an injury or illness in Arkansas. Our attorneys stay current on environmental laws and will do everything we can to get you the help you need. Get in touch with our office today so we can meet and talk about your case in an obligation-free consultation.