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What qualifies as hazardous materials?

No matter where you look these days, a myriad of products are considered to be health and/or safety risks. Known as hazardous materials, these items can cause a lot of problems if not used, transported or discarded properly. What actually qualifies as hazardous materials and what can Ohio residents do if they are injured or lose a loved one due to exposure to these materials?

Hazardous materials are defined as any product that could potentially harm the environment, animals or humans. This damage can be done by the product alone or by other outside factors. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration includes very specific health and safety hazards to define hazardous materials. They include any substance or chemical that contains carcinogens, causes damages to lungs, items considered corrosives or irritants and substances that are flammable or explosive.

Along with oversight from OSHA, these materials are regulated by a number of national agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation. Hazardous materials that are introduced into the environment, either intentionally or unintentionally, require the use of qualified hazardous materials management professionals to properly clean up and dispose of these products. If injury is suspected from contact with a hazardous material, it is advisable to seek immediate medical attention.

Manufacturers, transportation agencies and distributors of hazardous materials are all held to high standards when it comes protecting the public from any undue harm that could result from exposure to these products. Ohio residents who have suffered injury or the loss of a loved one due to the use or exposure of these types of materials may be entitled to seek compensation for the losses they have endured. Product liability claims may be filed against manufacturers or others in the supply chain, who are believed to be responsible for any damages sustained.

Source: ihmm.org, "What are Hazardous Materials", , Oct. 7, 2014

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