When it comes to choosing a home to live in, many of us assume that someone is looking out for the safety of that structure and any environmental hazards and other dangers it might pose to its inhabitants. We assume that houses most certainly must be built to be safer than they were, for example, two centuries ago.
However, the way that houses are built today—and the differences between these houses and those in the past—appear to potentially result in more hazards for inhabitants and surrounding communities. For example, houses today are sealed in an effort to save energy, thus allowing carbon monoxide to potentially build up in a way that it couldn’t in the 19th century. The potential dangers associated with new homes makes those looking into the purchase of real estate wonder: am I buying a death trap?
New Toxicity Concerns
Today, when individuals buy a home, there are numerous contingencies that are part of the sale: radon testing, lead testing, disclaimers waiving your right to sue the homeowners and others for the presence of other toxins. There are numerous “new” concerns that many were not even concerned about 50 years ago. But why? For one, we now have the technology to test for the presence of toxins where we once did not. In addition, we simply have more awareness of what environmental health and safety standards are, and how to spot them.
Radon, Mold, & Lead
Radon, in particular, is a common concern when people buy new homes. Many homes are found to have radon levels that are exceeding the safe standard-limit that has been set by the Environmental Protection Agency. However, if a home does measure too high in radon, there is a means of eliminating it.
Mold, however, is a different matter in that there is no standard set for how much is acceptable; some people experience severe allergies and other respiratory issues from the presence of a small amount of mold, while others do not experience any negative side effects in response to the presence of more mold. Regardless, it is common knowledge that both lead and mold have caused people severe health problems, and when buying a new home, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Environmental Hazard Attorneys
Most people who buy a new home arrange for a home inspector to come in and test for levels of both radon and lead. However, if the presence of a toxin that the inspector was supposed to test for is later found to be a problem, a home inspector could be found at fault, as well as others responsible for the undisclosed threat.
If you have been harmed by an environmental hazard in your home that wasn’t your fault, we can help. Having spent years litigating against these bad actors and negligent parties, the environmental attorneys of Harrell & Nowak can be your environmental hazards lawyer in New Orleans, Metairie, Kenner, and other areas throughout Louisiana. Contact us today for a free consultation.