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Businesses and citizens alike face daunting environmental challenges in the wake of a natural disaster, including mold, oil, gasoline, chemicals, sewage, household wastes, and other contaminants. Following Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, Jones Walker assisted businesses and individuals re-entering affected areas with an analysis of their legal obligations and an identification of safety standards promulgated by regulatory agencies. We worked to ensure that our clients were familiar with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) cleanup methods and levels guidelines, as well as the requirements for personnel protective equipment (PPE) for cleanup workers. Additionally, we helped our clients answer questions such as who is responsible for paying for the cleanup of particular properties, and what cleanup standards must be met before the property is placed back into commerce.

Areas recovering from large-scale disasters require proper assessment, cleanup, and disposal of contaminated materials, and protection of employees, tenants, customers, and other third parties. All these aspects present legal compliance issues that businesses must face in order to prevent possible litigation or other claims.

We have assisted business owners concerned with re-entering and reopening their businesses and facilities to employees and the public. Furthermore, we have worked with affected individuals to address cost-effective methods to remove mold and contaminated property in homes, as well as dealing with insurance claims relating to mold and disaster-related property damage. Regardless of the type of disaster that may affect your business or your home, Jones Walker's Environmental & Toxic Torts attorneys have the experience necessary to provide sound, practical advice.