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Handling mold exposure

According to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, exposure to mold can result in health issues such as asthma and other respiratory infections. Mold is common in buildings and New Jersey and around the country that are prone to humidity or water leaks or that may have been flooded in the recent past. Employers are urged to take employee reports of mold sightings or suspicious odors seriously. They are also urged to inspect for mold growth and clean any surfaces that may have mold on them.

Employees are encouraged to tell their manager if they notice any water leaks or musty odors that could indicate the presence of mold. Workers who are experiencing health issues related to exposure to mold should seek medical care immediately. Managers who receive reports from employees about possible mold exposure should have those employees seek medical care.

An indoor air quality team should be established to make sure that reports of mold or mildew are properly documented. Employees should make themselves familiar with any such plan that an employer has. If one does not exist, NIOSH says that one should be established as soon as possible. This team should consist of both managers and employees as well as someone to coordinate the interests of all parties.

Those who are exposed to mold or any other dangerous materials may be entitled to workers' compensation benefits if they subsequently develop an illness. Such benefits may help pay for medical expenses and other costs incurred while out of work. Employees who believe that they have gotten sick while on the job may wish to consult with an attorney, as their employers may attempt to contest the claim or deny that the illness was related to working conditions.

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