Firefighters know going in they’re entering a dangerous profession. But what they didn’t know — until earlier this year — was that the firefighting foam they were ordered to use causes a disturbing number of maladies, including:
- Renal or kidney cancer/cysts
- Testicular cancer/pain
- Pancreatic cancer
- Bladder cancer
- Prostate cancer
- Liver cancer
- Breast cancer
- Colorectal cancer (colon and/or rectal cancer)
- Thyroid cancer
- Ulcerative colitis
- Other illnesses
As a result, an increasing number of current and former firefighters have filed hundreds of lawsuits that assert toxic chemicals in AFFF firefighting foam caused them to develop one or more of the afflictions specified above, according to 2021 court filings.
Although all firefighters are at risk, these specialized firefighters face the greatest peril:
- U.S. military firefighters: Because the military used the firefighting carcinogen for roughly 60 years
- Firefighters assigned to airports: Because airports required the use of this foam until 2018
In addition to these individual AFFF lawsuits, a Texas man filed a class-action lawsuit over toxic per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) as well as exposure from facilities such as cities and airports that mandated AFFF use in January 2021. In a South Carolina Federal Court, there were more than 950 pending claims in multidistrict litigation.
Attorneys say defendant companies — including 3M, DuPont and Chemours — knew PFAS in its firefighting foam could accumulate in the body and result in the serious health problems listed above, but failed to warn the public.
But that’s not all: several states have sued 3M and other manufacturers for contamination of their facilities with PFAS, and the cost of AFFF clean up.
Are you a current or former firefighter who used AFFF foam? Or perhaps you represent a city, airport authority or other governmental entity that unknowingly purchased it? Either way, call our office immediately; you might be eligible for substantial compensation. And, as always, you pay nothing unless we win!