NYC Lead Exposure
Exposure to lead can lead to serious impairments. Many people who are now adults were exposed to lead during childhood. Even exposure to low amounts of lead can cause harmful effects on a child including nervous system damage, delayed growth and development, learning and behavioral problems, hearing and speech problems, lowered IQ, and symptoms of autism, among other life-changing outcomes.
If you have been affected by NYC lead exposure, you may need to speak with one of our lawyers. Lead exposure may create serious mental and physical problems, and lead to a lifetime of impairments.
The New York City personal injury attorneys at David Resnick & Associates, P.C., are ready to help if you or a loved one has suffered health problems due to lead exposure in NYC. Call us today at 888-797-0199 or fill out our online contact form for a free case evaluation.
What Injuries Can Result from Lead Exposure?
Lead exposure occurs when lead dust from old lead paint is inhaled or swallowed. After breathing in the dust, the lead is spread through the respiratory system and released into the blood, potentially causing serious injuries and conditions. Lead exposure or lead poisoning can also happen through the ingestion of lead substances. Lead can be stored in the bones and re-released into the blood, harming organs long after the initial exposure.
Children will tend to show signs of lead toxicity at lower levels than adults. Young children are at the highest risk because their brain is still developing. Lead poisoning has even occurred in kids whose parents accidentally brought home lead dust on their clothing.
If you have children and suspect lead exposure in your home, it is a good idea to have their blood checked for lead. However, lead poisoning affects people of all ages, so anyone exposed to lead may be in danger.
Injuries and conditions caused by lead exposure include:
- Neurological effects, such as impaired cognition and seizures
- Damage to the brain and nervous system
- Digestive disorders
- Kidney damage
- High blood pressure
- Stunted growth
- Attention deficit disorder
- Learning disabilities
- Reproductive issues
- Muscle and joint pain
- Blood conditions (anemia)
Common Ways You Can Be Exposed to Lead
Even though lead-based paint was banned in 1978, there are still many homes, apartments, and other buildings in New York City that contain lead-based paint. Scraping off old lead-based paint is dangerous because it releases lead into the air through paint dust. Painting over older coats of lead paint could prevent exposure. When that paint starts to chip or peel, however, it can be inhaled or ingested by a child. Lead may also be present in furniture, toys, and other products manufactured before 1978.
The most common way children are exposed to lead is through contact with paint chips and dust. Children can swallow chipped pieces of lead-based paint. They are more likely to ingest household dust or soil that’s been contaminated by leaded paint.
However, lead paint and dust and contaminated soil are not the only ways children can be exposed to lead. Other sources include:
- Imported toys
- Imported cosmetics
- Pottery and ceramics
- Car batteries and industrial products
- Lead-contaminated drinking water
- Consumer products, such as tea kettles and vinyl miniblinds
What to Do If You Have Been Exposed to Lead
If you have been exposed to lead, you may not exhibit symptoms right away. It’s important to note that not showing symptoms does not mean that you don’t have lead poisoning. You may only have symptoms once the amount of lead in your blood reaches a certain level.
Children with lead poisoning may not exhibit any symptoms as well. It’s a good idea to have your child tested to be on the safe side. If your kids do develop signs of lead poisoning, the symptoms may appear as any of the following:
- Kidney problems
- Irritability or other behavioral problems
- Stomach pain
- Sudden weight loss
- Sluggishness and fatigue
- Loss of appetite
- Metallic taste
- Muscle and joint pain
- Hearing loss
If your child exhibits any of these symptoms, have him or her tested for lead immediately. Your doctor can determine how much lead is in their blood with a simple test. Call 911 right away if your child is having serious symptoms of lead poisoning, such as seizures or continuous vomiting. It’s critical that you act quickly because lead poisoning can have irreversible effects on a child.
If you are pregnant, you can pass on lead poisoning to your unborn baby by breathing in lead dust or by swallowing an item that contains lead. Babies exposed to lead before birth could be born prematurely or have learning disabilities or behavioral problems.
Taking the following steps can help protect your family from lead poisoning:
- Clean dusty surfaces. Clean your floors with a wet mop, wipe down furniture and windowsills, and all other dusty surfaces.
- Don’t track lead into your home. Lead occurs naturally in soils. Soil can also become contaminated from lead-based paint on buildings. Leaded gasoline can also contaminate the soil. To avoid bringing lead into your home, take your shoes off at the door when you enter. Wash your hands too.
- Wash hands and toys. Regularly wash children’s hands and toys to remove dust and dirt. Household dust and outdoor dirt can both contain lead.
- Run cold water. If the plumbing in your home contains lead pipes or fittings, be sure to run cold water for at least a minute, or longer, prior to use, and drink filtered water. Never use hot tap water for cooking or to make baby formula.
- Don’t allow children to play in the soil. Give them a sandbox that is covered when not in use. Cover bare soil by planting grass or covering it with mulch.
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet. Regular nutritious meals could help lower lead absorption. Children need enough iron, calcium, vitamin C in their diets to help prevent lead from being absorbed.
- Keep your home tidy and well-maintained. If your home has lead-based paint, check for peeling paint. Avoid sanding, which can cause dust particles containing lead.
What Are the Legal Remedies in a Lead Exposure Lawsuit?
Lead exposure cases can be very complicated. It may require legal action to resolve disputes over lead exposure. For lead exposure lawsuits, the legal remedy generally involves financial compensation issued to the injured party. The award may cover such damages as medical expenses (past, present, and future), prescription and over-the-counter drugs, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and more.
Other legal remedies could include a recall of the defective products that created the lead exposure. With workplace lead exposure cases, the employer could be required to adjust their practices so that they meet industry standards to prevent lead exposure.
The New York lead exposure lawyers at David Resnick & Associates, P.C. have extensive experience helping New Yorkers who are suffering due to lead exposure. Injured clients benefit from our experience in handling these complex claims. Our New York lead exposure attorneys:
- Understand how children are exposed to lead
- Handle lead exposure cases involving contaminated buildings, contaminated toys, and other forms of lead contamination
- Know state and federal laws, rules and regulations that pertain to clients at risk of lead exposure
- Keep up to date of changes in state and federal laws affecting lead litigation
- Have successfully handled lead cases involving a wide array of lead poisoning injuries
- Understand how to demonstrate who is liable for lead exposure injuries and deaths
Who May Be Held Liable for Lead Exposure Injuries?
Because manufacturers have known of the dangers of lead exposure, they can be held liable when people suffer harm from exposure to their products. Because lead builds up in the body before causing measurable effects, many people harmed by lead poisoning when they were children have lead exposure legal claims years later as adults.
Lead poisoning cases can be pursued against a number of different parties depending upon the facts and circumstances of the case. Liable parties may include:
- The landlord of an apartment building or house
- Owners of rental homes
- Sellers of homes and real estate agents
- Daycare facility owners
- Employer, especially in an industrial setting
Contact a New York Lead Exposure Attorney
Lead exposure can cause serious, long-term, and even life-threatening injuries and illnesses. Even low levels of lead can cause harm over time, including stunted growth and hearing loss. More serious injuries include damage to the nervous system, permanent brain damage, and cognitive impairment.
If you believe that you have been exposed to lead in your home, contact David Resnick & Associates, P.C. now at 888-797-0199 to schedule a free and confidential consultation.