Companies that handle hazardous materials must take extra precautions to protect the safety and health of their employees. Certain chemicals can cause explosions, fires and other unsafe conditions that can threaten employees' welfare. Two employees injured during a workplace accident at a Sidney, Ohio, manufacturer will almost certainly be eligible for workers' compensation after sustaining burns during a chemical blast.
Officials report that the explosion, which occurred on Jan. 25, occurred at the Protecpac building in the western Ohio town. The company uses isobutene, a flammable material, during a process that creates packaging foam. Fire investigators and company leaders are working together to determine the cause of the blaze, which left two workers with non-life threatening injuries. Four people were working in the building at the time of the explosion; one was uninjured and the other refused medical treatment. The other two were transported to a nearby hospital.
Fire officials say the blast was so strong that it blew out several walls within the building.
Even though the workers' injuries may not be considered life-threatening, they still could have sustained harm that could lead to temporary or permanent disability. This is particularly true of burn injuries, which generally require intensive care in specialized medical units. Burns are also especially expensive to treat because of the potential for infection and special care that must be provided. The workers may be forced to spend time away from their jobs to recuperate, which could cause them significant financial hardship.
Workers' compensation claims could allow the two victims to maintain their financial health while attempting to recover their physical health. The compensation process should allow the two workers to receive benefits that will pay for their work-related injury expenses. These payments could continue long into the future, particularly if the workers require ongoing care for their injuries. The workers' compensation process can also provide temporary disability payments to allow the two employees to keep up with their monthly bills even though they are unable to work.
Source: The Columbus Dispatch, "Two workers injured in explosion at business," Jan. 27, 2013.