PFAS chemicals were widely used in firefighting foams on military bases, firefighting training facilities, aircraft crash sites, and airport hangars.
These pervasive chemicals are found not only in firefighting foams but also in landfills when products containing PFAS break down and in fertilizer made from human waste or sewage. All these sources can contaminate nearby drinking water supplies and public drinking water systems.
Of particular concern, is the multi-faceted exposure firefighters have to toxins directly from firefighting foams, from the gear they wear, and the water they drink at military bases.
The main problem with the PFAS chemicals used in AFFF is the fact that these compounds, known as "forever chemicals" are virtually indestructible and can accumulate in the human blood and tissues.
On average, firefighters face a 9 percent increase in being diagnosed with cancer, and a 14 percent increase in cancer-related deaths, compared to the general population in the U.S., according to studies conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have identified possible associations of certain PFAS with various types of cancer, most notably kidney, pancreatic, and testicular cancer.
"In May 2014, at age 51, I was experiencing mild pain in my right testicle and swelling. At the time I really wasn't scared, I guess I didn't realize how serious it was. My local doctors did an ultrasound and they brought down an oncologist who was fairly certain it was cancer. I underwent surgery at a nearby hospital to remove my testicle, and fortunately, the cancer was contained and had not spread, or metastasized.
One day, I was on social media and someone was talking about Alameda Naval Base receiving a Superfund status for cleanup from the government, so I checked into it and found out that the drinking water at this naval station exceeded the EPA's health advisory level for PFOS and PFOA. Finally made sense, most likely, my cancer is linked to drinking water contaminated with PFAS chemicals. I was devastated but also felt some relief as well."
Have you been exposed to firefighting foam as a firefighter or airport worker, then been diagnosed with testicular cancer? Case managers at Atraxia Law are available to review your case.
A successful claim requires evidence and the legal process is very complex and tedious, requiring quality assistance.
We will discuss with you the possibility of filing a claim and holding accountable one or more of the above companies that acted negligently and exposed you to cancer-causing chemicals. Contact our team of experts to review whether you or a family member may be entitled to financial compensation.