PFCs are a family of man-made chemicals that have been found in the air, water, soil and food. GenX is one type of PFC manufactured by 3M since 1965 to manufacture products like Scotchgard for carpets and stain repellant on clothing. An EPA study released last month revealed very high levels of this chemical in some areas near industrial sources while others had no detectable levels at all. Attorneys consider these types people who might be exposed to these substances as well as companies looking out for their rights when it comes to toxic exposure litigation or defense against such claims.
Wilmington, North Carolina is the most recent city to be found with high levels of PFCs in their drinking water. Wilmington’s mayor has announced that they will not be switching back to the previous water source until the issue is resolved. The “genx in wilmington water” article discusses how GenX was used by DuPont for decades and how it ended up contaminating the drinking water supply.
Manufacturers, landlords, and government officials have all been sued for exposing the public to deadly pollutants needlessly.
Every day, humans are exposed to a wide variety of chemicals and poisons, some of which are more harmful to our health than others. Even tiny concentrations of certain chemicals may result in life-threatening illnesses. Manufacturers, merchants, landlords, employers, schools, and government agencies all have a responsibility to ensure that the population is not exposed to deadly pollutants needlessly.
Some natural and man-made chemicals used by businesses to make their goods waterproof, fire-resistant, or cost-effective may be hazardous to human health. These chemicals escape from production facilities or the goods themselves all too frequently, contaminating our food, drinking water, and breathing air. Other times, businesses fail to prevent natural poisons from entering goods or our homes.
Toxic substances may have disastrous consequences if you or your property are exposed to them. Physical injury, property damage, and business-related injuries are all possibilities. It is vital that you employ the services of an expert environmental lawsuit attorney to control the damage that has already been done and to avoid additional pollution.
Toxic Chemical Exposure from Common Sources
Here are some of today’s most frequent — and harmful — toxic chemical exposure sources.
Perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) and perfluorooctanoic acids are two types of perfluorinated chemicals (PFOAs)
What are PFCs? PFCs are synthetic compounds that exclusively include carbon and fluorine. PFOAs (also known as C8) are a kind of PFC that is extensively utilized in industrial and commercial items.
These compounds may be found in a variety of products, including waterproof and stain-resistant fabrics, teflon cookware, and firefighting foams.
Side effects on health: These compounds are “possibly carcinogenic,” according to early health risk assessment assessments. They bioaccumulate, so if they do break down at all, it’s sluggish. This makes them extremely toxic to human health and the environment. This indicates that, despite the fact that PFCs and PFOAs are no longer widely utilized, we are continuously exposed to substances from the past.
Testicular and kidney malignancies, as well as diseases including thyroid disease, high cholesterol, ulcerative colitis, and pregnancy-induced hypertension, have all been related to PFOAs and PFCs.
Stuart, Florida, filed a lawsuit against fire suppression product makers, alleging that their products contaminated the city’s drinking water wells.
In October 2018, our lawyers filed a lawsuit on behalf of the city of Stuart, Florida, against 3M, Tyco Fire Products, Buckeye Fire Equipment Company, Chemguard, and National Foam, as well as other fire suppression equipment manufacturers. Before the chemicals were taken off the market, the Stuart Fire Rescue purportedly employed PFOS and PFOA-based Aqueous Film Forming Foam. According to the complaint, the foam’s PFOSs and PFOAs infiltrated the city’s groundwater, contaminating the city’s drinking water wells.
Thousands more similar cases against DuPont and Chemours were resolved in 2017 for their usage of PFOAs in Teflon. They agreed to pay $671 million in total. PFOAs allegedly escaped from its West Virginia facility into local drinking water, according to lawsuits. (If you feel your water has been polluted with PFOS or PFOAs, please contact our lawyers.)
What it entails: HaloSan (or BCDMH) are bromine and chlorine tablets that are used to remediate obstructed water wells that are creating smells or discolored water.
The chemical has been discovered in drinking water. State officials in Denmark, South Carolina, were recently revealed to have treated the town’s drinking water wells with HaloSan for a decade, despite the fact that the chemical has never been certified by the EPA for this purpose.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized HaloSan as a serious skin and eye irritant in a 2007 risk assessment report, causing rash, itching, blisters, hives, and eye discomfort and swelling.
Suits are being considered by residents in Denmark, South Carolina, to guarantee that their water is cleaned up and does not become poisoned again. (If you live in Denmark and suspect your water is polluted with HaloSan, please contact our lawyers.)
What it is: A man-made fluorochemical developed by Chemours (a DuPont spin-off) to replace C8 (also known as PFOA), an extremely dangerous chemical. HFPO dimer acid makes up GenX.
Cleaning products, firefighting foams, Teflon, paint, outdoor textiles, and food packaging all include this chemical.
Side effects on health: GenX is poisonous and carcinogenic. It is, however, one of hundreds of hazardous substances that are not evaluated in drinking water.
Lawsuits: Chemours and DuPont were sued when it was revealed that their Fayetteville, North Carolina business had been leaking GenX chemicals into the neighboring Cape Fear River since 1980. The river serves as a source of drinking water for Wilmington, North Carolina.
What it is: A colorless, odorless natural gas made of of carbon and hydrogen.
Natural gas pipes used to heat houses are where you’ll find it. It’s a greenhouse gas produced by the decomposition of animal and landfill waste, as well as the extraction of coal, oil, and natural gas.
While you can’t smell methane in its natural state, you can detect the chemical odor that gas companies use to notify you to a gas leak. In extreme circumstances, methane exposure may cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, loss of consciousness, asphyxiation, and death. Because methane gas is very flammable, it may produce explosions and flames. Explosions like this may cause serious injuries, burns, and even death.
Our lawyers filed a class action case against Columbia Gas for the Merrimack Valley gas explosion, which resulted in the loss of up to 80 homes and businesses. Columbia Gas is accused of knowing or should have known that the design, maintenance, and operation of its natural gas pipelines may result in an explosion, according to the complaint.
What it is: Soft, heavy metal that occurs naturally.
Paint (especially in older houses), drinking water, and other consumer items are all sources (like toys and jewelry)
Effects on the body: Lead poisoning may occur after prolonged exposure. Lead poisoning may have major consequences, such as diminished IQ and stunted development, particularly in youngsters who are still growing. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 500,000 children under the age of six are still at risk of lead poisoning.
Lawsuits: Landlords, public housing authorities, government agencies, and school systems may all be sued for lead poisoning.
One of the worst lead catastrophes in recent history occurred as a result of the Flint water crisis. Flint, Michigan’s water source was shifted to the Flint River in 2014 from Lake Huron and the Detroit River. The city’s water supply was soon poisoned with lead due to the lead-based pipes. A state of emergency was proclaimed in 2016.
Although the lead levels have returned to normal, the city’s lead pipes are still being replaced. The state of Michigan reached an agreement worth $87 million to pay the expenses of repairing the lead pipes.
Multiple cases are currently active in state and federal courts, alleging that government officials were aware of the public health danger when they switched Flint’s water source and chose to disregard it. Six state employees have been charged with criminal negligence for their role in the incident.
What it is: A trace quantity of a naturally occurring metal found in soil and rocks.
Batteries, metal coatings, and plastic are all places where this substance may be found. Tobacco is one of the plants that readily absorbs cadmium. As a result, smokers have greater cadmium levels in their bodies than non-smokers.
Cadmium is poisonous and carcinogenic, thus it has negative health impacts. Long-term exposure may lead to reproductive issues, learning difficulties, renal issues, kidney failure, bone softening, and lung, prostate, and kidney cancer.
Major chocolate shops in the United States, such as Hershey and Nestlé, have been sued for allegedly selling cadmium-tainted chocolate. In 2018, the corporations reached an agreement with consumer advocacy organization As You Sow to launch a cooperative investigation into the primary sources of lead and cadmium.
A lawsuit has been filed against Soylent, alleging that the meal replacement includes cadmium and lead.
What it entails: The fibrous structure of this mineral, as well as its heat and chemical resistance, make it a popular choice.
Insulation, drywall, flooring, plaster, gaskets, automotive brake pads and linings, fireproof apparel, and even imported items like crayons have been found to contain asbestos.
Mesothelioma is a cancer that predominantly affects the lungs and has serious health consequences.
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Asbestos is the longest-running mass tort in history. Mesothelioma patients and their families have won billions of dollars in lawsuits against asbestos producers and corporations that utilized the toxic material despite knowing about the dangers.
Pietro Macaluso’s family won a $60 million judgment against A.O. Smith Corp., Burnham Commercial, and Peerless in 2018 after he died of mesothelioma after being exposed to asbestos in buildings he destroyed. The asbestos that Macaluso was exposed to was purportedly placed or produced by these firms.
What it is: A kind of fungus that develops on decaying organic debris or in humidified regions.
Found in: Homes and other structures, especially in locations where there is a lot of dampness (like bathrooms, floors and walls where flooding and leaking has occurred)
Mold exposure has the potential to worsen health issues such as asthma and allergies. Coughing, wheezing, respiratory issues, and skin, throat, and eye discomfort are all common allergic reactions.
Toxic mold (also known as stachybotrys chartarum) may lead to significant consequences such as neurological disorders and death.
Lawsuits: Landlords are often sued for toxic mold exposure. Most states have regulations requiring landlords to take steps to prevent and eliminate mold.
New York City and the federal government struck a $2 billion settlement in June 2018 over the New York City Housing Authority’s (NYCHA) health infractions. The funds will be utilized to strengthen the New York City Housing Authority. The complaint uncovered 300 mold incidences totaling more than 100 square feet. The NYCHA acknowledged to lying to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) about the presence of lead paint in NYCHA buildings, which it is responsible for housing more than 500,000 people.
Gasoline and different types of fuel
What it is: Crude oil-based fuel with ethanol and benzene as additions.
Contamination of groundwater is frequent, especially around petrol stations, oil fields, and refineries. Humans are also exposed to these harmful substances via oil spills and leaks that occur during the transportation of gasoline.
Health consequences: People who clean up oil spills and work in refineries are more vulnerable to harmful health consequences. Respiratory issues, neurological issues, an increased risk of cancer, and skin and eye issues are just a few of the side effects. Gasoline has been classified as a carcinogen by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
Lawsuits: Following the Deepwater Horizon oil leak, which was one of the biggest environmental catastrophes in US history, British Petroleum created a $20 billion fund to help with government response, environmental cleaning and rehabilitation, and individual damages. Individual losses included missed wages, property damage, and medical bills.
Storage tanks, both above and below ground
Containers used by oil refineries, petrol stations, and other businesses to store chemicals in a convenient position. Inadequate maintenance may lead to tank failure, which can lead to pollution of the land or groundwater.
Oil refineries, petrol stations, and dry cleaners often utilize these containers.
Health effects vary based on the extent of exposure and the chemical leaking from the storage tank. Oral exposure to gasoline additives has yet to be determined in terms of long-term consequences. However, in experimental animals, MTBE has been linked to an increased risk of cancer, and ethanol may harm the central nervous system and liver.
Maryland launched a lawsuit in 2017 against 50 petroleum firms for groundwater pollution. Underground storage tanks spilled methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), a gasoline additive, contaminating the state’s groundwater, according to the state.
It’s a mineral that may be found in soil, water, and the air.
Arsenic is a heavy metal that may pollute groundwater and food. These are the most hazardous to human health sources.
Arsenic poisoning has been linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer. Early exposure has been shown to have an impact on cognitive development.
In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched a lawsuit against 28 wine firms, including Trader Joe’s, Korbel, and Cupcake, for making and selling wine with inorganic arsenic levels above the EPA’s guideline of 10 parts per billion.
Crystal Geyser was sued in July 2018 for improperly dumping of arsenic that had been cleaned out of their drinking water. If proven guilty of unlawfully transferring and dumping of arsenic into a pond near Olancha, California, the corporation may face penalties of up to $8 million.
Solvents used in industry
Industrial solvents are compounds that are used to dissolve or dilute other substances. Acetone, methanol, 1.1.1. Trichloroethane, 1,2,3-trichloropropane (TCP), benzene, and hexane are only a few of them.
Plastic, fabrics, paint, paint removers, insecticides, cleaning goods, toiletries, and other items contain phthalates.
Effects on the body:
Skin and eye irritation, headaches, dizziness, and nausea are all possible short-term side effects.
Long-term solvent exposure may have long-term health implications. Solvents used in paint and glue, according to a new study done by Harvard School of Public Health experts, may cause persistent brain harm, including memory issues and cognitive impairments. Damage to the central nervous system, kidneys, or liver might be among the long-term consequences. Solvents such as benzene have been linked to cancer.
Shell Oil was fined $22 million in 2016 by the city of Clovis, California, for polluting the city’s drinking water wells with the industrial solvent 1,2,3-trichloropropane, or TCP. The solvent has been identified as a cancer-causing substance by the state of California.
Have You Ever Been Exposed to Toxic Chemicals?
Our company has prosecuted a number of high-profile cases involving dangerous substances, including the BP oil spill.
You may be able to file a case if you or a loved one was hurt or suffered property damage or financial loss as a consequence of exposure to a dangerous substance. Lawsuits may be made against the chemical producer, corporations that utilize toxic chemicals in their goods, merchants who sell the items, and/or employers that expose employees to hazardous substances by failing to provide adequate safety equipment.
Our lawyers represent people and companies all around the country who have been harmed by hazardous chemical exposure. Our company has prosecuted a number of high-profile cases involving personal injury and property damage caused by dangerous substances, including the BP oil spill. We’ve won historic environmental litigation cases and have the resources to take on any corporation, large or little.
To get a free, no-obligation legal evaluation, just fill out our case review form.
PFOA (Perfluorooctanoic acid) and PFOS (Perfluorooctane sulfonate) are two chemicals that have been found to be present in the blood of many Americans. PFCs, or perfluorinated compounds, are used to make products like non-stick cookware, carpets, clothing, fast food wrappers, stain repellent for clothes and furniture. These chemicals can cause health problems such as cancer, liver disease and reduced fertility. “PFOA substitute” is a chemical that has been suggested by some researchers as an alternative to these harmful substances. Reference: pfoa substitute.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I sue for chemical exposure?
A: Yes, but this is a complex issue which requires time and money to resolve.
How do you prove chemical exposure?
A: Chemical injury is usually accompanied by symptoms that are consistent with the type of chemicals involved. These symptoms can include burns, irritation, or allergic reactions.
What happens when you are exposed to toxic fumes?
A: Your lungs might become inflamed, which can result in serious health problems.
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