Firefighting foam lawsuits have been filed by plaintiffs throughout the country alleging that the foam was dangerous to people. These lawsuits have a long history, dating back to the 1960s. In fact, some people have claimed that the foam caused their deaths. Whether this is true or not is another question.
An increasing number of people are filing AFFF firefighting foam lawsuits against PFAS manufacturers for health damage and personal injury. These lawsuits allege that firefighting foam manufacturers and their suppliers were aware of the health risks associated with PFAS and did not warn the public about the dangers. Many of the plaintiffs have been diagnosed with cancer or have been diagnosed with other illnesses as a result of exposure to the toxic substances. Many of the lawsuits also involve contamination of groundwater near airports, military bases, and industrial facilities.
The chemicals are found in firefighting foam and have been linked to an increased risk of cancer. According to studies conducted by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), exposure to PFAS is associated with a greater risk of cancer. The American Cancer Society and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have also identified PFAS as a human carcinogen. In addition to civilians who have developed cancer as a result of contact with PFAS-based firefighting foam, firefighters have been the greatest targets of PFAS lawsuits.
PFAS are non-biodegradable chemicals and can remain in the human body for years. In addition to the risk of cancer, PFAS can damage the immune system, affect fetal development, and increase the risk of high blood pressure. The North Carolina Attorney General’s office has launched an investigation into the PFAS contamination of North Carolina firefighting foam and may take further legal action.
The AFFF firefighting foam contains PFAS chemicals. While this chemical is intended for use in firefighting foam, it can cause contamination of soil, groundwater, and other resources. As a result, PFAS-contaminated firefighting foam is a public nuisance.
The health risk from PFAS exposure depends on the frequency and duration of exposure. Firefighters are especially vulnerable to PFAS exposure, since the chemical can be absorbed through the skin. Even if firefighters wear personal protective equipment, they can still be exposed to hazardous levels of PFAS. The effects of exposure do not always show themselves immediately, so victims of AFFF exposure may take legal action and receive financial compensation.
The MDL judge has recently announced that the first bellwether trial will begin in April 2023. The selection of a bellwether trial date will kickstart settlement negotiations in the global PFAS litigation. Currently, plaintiffs are seeking damages for their pain and suffering caused by PFAS contamination.
PFAS in AFFF
PFAS (per and polyfluoroalkyl substances) are man-made chemicals with a high potential to be toxic, flammable, or both. They are used in firefighting foams and have been added to many consumer products for decades. These chemicals are also found in drinking water and groundwater.
PFAS chemicals have been linked to numerous types of cancer. They can remain in the environment and in human blood for decades, posing a health risk. Several lawsuits have been filed over the issue, seeking to hold manufacturers accountable for the hazards to public health. These lawsuits seek to protect the health of Americans.
The presence of PFAS in firefighting foam has a negative impact on the groundwater surrounding these properties. Several Department of Defense facilities have reported PFAS contamination in their water supplies, and these chemicals have migrated to neighboring properties. The DOD has a list of 651 DOD sites that are undergoing an assessment to determine the extent of their use and release of PFAS.
In a recent study, researchers identified 57 different classes of PFAS chemicals, ranging from a single chemical to a complex system containing thousands of different compounds. One professor of environmental engineering at Colorado School of Mines estimated that up to 500 PFAS compounds have been detected at sites where foam has been used. Of these, between thirty and fifty are known to be major components of firefighting foam.
PFAS in firefighting foam has become one of the largest sources of contamination in our drinking water. For over five decades, the military has used PFAS-based firefighting foam, which has been known to be toxic. During emergencies, the foam is released in large quantities and may contaminate nearby drinking water sources. In addition, some training exercises use PFAS-laced foam to kill flammable materials.
The Air Force has already spent $10.8 million replacing its AFFF inventory and incinerating the old AFFF. It expects the total to reach $74 million by 2020. This estimate comes from an Air Force PowerPoint presentation obtained as discovery in a lawsuit involving PFAS contamination.