Pollution is not only something that can damage the environment as a whole but is also something that can have a direct impact on our own health. If you feel that your or your family have become unwell, or been diagnosed with a health condition due to pollution, you will probably be wondering what your options are in terms of securing compensation from those responsible.
Well, this will involve taking a legal approach against the people, companies or industries involved.
Health Issues Due to Air Pollution
Air pollution, in particular, can lead to a range of severe health conditions if you are exposed to it consistently. Fumes, gasses and dust can cause anything from headaches, difficulty breathing, right up to having the potential to be a leading cause of more serious conditions such as asthma, bronchitis and even lung cancer.
Workers in certain professions are more likely to be exposed to air pollution and if they have been asked to perform their role without the proper education on the dangerous fumes and gasses and they are not working with or have been given appropriate protective clothing, they may be able to file a claim for compensation against their employers.
Health Issues Due to Water/Land Pollution
Pollution can also be found on our land or in our water and this is usually caused by historical uses of land that have left it to be contaminated. Good examples of this could be land that used to be the location of a power plant, chemical plant or waste dumping facility.
These sites could be putting people’s health at risk if they are being constantly exposed to harmful levels of pollution.
Compensation Due to Pollution
If you suspect that your illness or that of somebody else that you know has been caused due to exposure to high levels of pollution or pollution exposure over a sustained period of time, the best course of action would be to consult with a specialist environmental lawyer. They will be able to give you the advice on what your options are with regards to bringing legal proceedings that could result in you being awarded compensation.
Companies are bound by numerous environmental laws and regulations which they legally required to comply with in regards to pollution. Anyone that is living or working in an area that is subject to high levels of pollution will have a strong reason to claim compensation from those causing it.
Steps to Take If You Feel Pollution is the Cause of Your Illness
First and foremost, if you are confident that pollution has played a big part in any illness or medical condition that you have had, it is of huge importance that you quickly get the right advice on what you can do about it.
Speaking to your employer or the person or company that has allegedly subjected you to pollution is something else that you should be doing as early as possible. Reporting your stance and the health issues are important as they may at least be able to take some steps to ensure that nobody else is subjected to the pollution going forward.
A company or site owner has an obligation to perform risk assessments on the pollution levels within the workplace and should have ways to monitor this accurately. Safety precautions and protective clothing should also be provided for employees to wear if they are working in an area that could emit high levels of pollution.
A visit to your doctor should also be high up the priority list as you need to get a diagnosis and an opinion from them as to whether exposure to pollution could have been a cause or contribution to the health issues that you are suffering from. Always bring any evidence or notes along with you that will support your claims that pollution could have been a contributing factor.
To give your claim further strength, always keep any receipts that you have been given for medications or prescriptions. In fact, any expenses that were incurred as a result of your illness or condition will be important as these will come under the umbrella of what you could be claiming compensation for.
Speak to an Environmental Law Lawyer
After you have done all of the above, take all of the evidence that you have gained and go and speak to a lawyer that specialises in environmental law. They will be able to look over it all, give you advice and then give you an opinion on whether you have a valid claim for compensation.
They will then take you through what the next steps will be as you move forward with your claims for compensation against those that have potentially damaged your health due to exposing you to pollution.