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Oregon Firefighter Foam Lawsuit: Get the Right Attorney

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C.L. Mike Schmidt Published by C.L. Mike Schmidt

If you’re affected by the Oregon firefighter foam lawsuit, time is a critical factor. Exposure to AFFF’s toxic PFAS chemicals could put you in line for compensation.

This article explains who qualifies for the lawsuit, the allegations against manufacturers like DuPont and 3M, and the impact of PFAS. Discover your legal rights and what compensation might be available to you.

If you or a loved one has been impacted by firefighting foam exposure, Schmidt & Clark, LLP, can provide the necessary legal support. With a reputation for excellence in representing plaintiffs, our primary focus is to ensure that you receive the justice and compensation that is rightfully yours.

Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawsuits

Firefighting foams, also known as Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF), have been at the center of a significant rise in firefighting foam lawsuits. The primary reason for the surge in litigation related to AFFF firefighting foam lawsuits is the dangerous chemicals they contain, PFAS, which have been linked to cancer.

As of January 2024, the litigation has grown significantly, with a staggering 6,994 pending cases.

Taking a stand against this public health threat, the state of Oregon has filed a lawsuit against 21 AFFF manufacturers, including industry giants DuPont and 3M. The objective here is to make these manufacturers answerable for the PFAS contamination and demand compensation and damages.

Key Points from Lawsuits

The AFFF lawsuits initiated by Oregon plaintiffs have not only managed to shine a spotlight on the issue but also succeeded in securing compensation for the victims. Victims are pursuing these AFFF cancer lawsuit cases to obtain compensation for the distress, suffering, and medical costs incurred due to exposure to the carcinogenic AFFF.

One such case resulted in Tyco Fire Products LP agreeing to pay $17.5 million in a recent settlement regarding firefighting foam contamination. Such victories underscore the significance of corporate responsibility and safety, providing hope for others in their quest for justice.

What Is AFFF?

According to the Division of Spill Prevention and Response, AFFF is an acronym for Aqueous Film Forming Foam, a synthetic solution specifically designed to tackle Class B fires, which involve flammable liquids [1].

It is composed of a unique blend of chemicals, including PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances), which act as surfactants to help the foam spread rapidly over fire, providing effective cooling and suppression.

However, these PFAS chemicals, also known as forever chemicals, which include PFOS and PFOA, are toxic chemicals and persistent in the environment, leading to long-term contamination. Moreover, the newer PFAS chemicals replacing PFOS and PFOA are also toxic, persistent, more challenging, and costly to remove from water.

This has led to significant human health concerns, as PFAS has been associated with various harmful health outcomes, including cancer.

Who Are The Defendants In AFFF Lawsuits in Oregon?

The defendants in AFFF lawsuits in Oregon are mainly AFFF manufacturers such as 3M and Tyco Fire Products. These companies stand accused of knowingly distributing toxic AFFF without providing adequate warnings about the chemical’s toxic effects.

Allegedly, these manufacturers overlooked the health and property risks that residents could foreseeably face due to exposure to PFAS amidst environmental contamination.

However, recent settlements like the $55 million agreement by 3M over PFAS contamination in Michigan provide hope for Oregon plaintiffs seeking justice in similar lawsuits.

As stated by the National Cancer Institute, the association between AFFF and cancer isn’t mere conjecture; scientific studies support it. PFOS, a chemical found in AFFF, has been linked to a 56% increased risk of thyroid cancer, potentially due to interference with thyroid hormone production and function [2].

Occupational exposure of firefighters to carcinogenic chemicals may increase their risk of developing different types of cancer. PFAS is one of the major classes of carcinogenic chemicals that firefighters are exposed to as occupational hazards – National Library of Medicine

Another chemical in AFFF, PFOA, has been shown to promote pancreatic cancer by increasing oxidative stress, fibrous tissue formation, and the expansion of precancerous lesions in the pancreas.

The bioaccumulation of these toxic PFAS components in the human body increases the risk of several diseases, including thyroid disease and various types of cancer.

Does Firefighting Foam Contain PFAS?

Firefighting foam does contain PFAS. Notable sites with dramatic levels of PFAS contamination in Oregon include the Portland International Airport and Kingsley Field Air National Guard Base in Klamath Falls.

PFAS chemicals used in AFFF on military bases and at commercial airports have led to significant environmental contamination of soil, surface water, and groundwater.

Reacting to this public health risk, the Oregon Health Authority, in collaboration with the Environmental Protection Agency, has implemented measures to monitor public water systems and ensure that customers are not exposed to harmful PFAS chemicals.

Health advisory levels for common PFAS compounds have been established to inform and protect consumers from adverse developmental and immune effects.

Common Injuries Linked To Firefighting Foam PFAS

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, exposure to PFAS from AFFF could result in multiple injuries and health conditions. Most commonly, eligible claimants have developed [3]:

These cancers are associated with PFAS exposure. While these are the most common injuries linked to firefighting foam PFAS, there are other potential health risks associated with PFAS exposure that could also be grounds for an AFFF lawsuit in Oregon.

Who Qualifies for the AFFF Lawsuit in Oregon?

Individuals who provide proof of regular occupational exposure to PFAS either from AFFF or through contaminated groundwater, followed by a diagnosis of cancer, qualify for the AFFF lawsuit in Oregon.

Typically, those who have been repeatedly exposed to AFFF, especially in occupations like firefighting, where PFAS exposure is significant, may fulfill eligibility criteria for filing a lawsuit against manufacturers.

If you or a loved one has developed cancers associated with PFAS exposure, such as kidney and testicular cancer, along with:

  • prostate cancer
  • pancreatic cancer
  • liver cancer
  • bladder cancer
  • ovarian cancer
  • similar cancers

How Do AFFF Lawsuits Work?

AFFF lawsuits work by first securing legal representation from attorneys experienced in such matters. In Oregon, AFFF lawsuits, as well as related cases across the nation, have been consolidated in the District of South Carolina as part of multidistrict litigation (MDL), streamlining the legal process.

The legal process consists of filing a complaint, compiling evidence during the discovery phase, and concluding with either a settlement or a court trial. Although the process may extend from several months to multiple years, each step is crucial in building a strong case against the defendants.

Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawsuits Settlement Amounts in Oregon

The settlement amounts in Oregon AFFF lawsuits aren’t predetermined; they are calculated based on the severity of each individual’s injuries and damages. This individualized approach can lead to substantial awards.

For example, top-tier settlement amounts for AFFF firefighting foam cases may range from $300,000 to $600,000 on average for plaintiffs with long-term occupational exposure and diagnosis with severe cancer types linked to AFFF.

However, it’s important to remember that these figures are not guaranteed, and the actual settlement amounts may vary when the resolutions occur.

Potential Compensation for Victims of Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawsuits in Oregon

In Oregon AFFF cases, claimants have the right to seek compensation for diverse types of damages, including:

  • Medical expenses related to illnesses such as various types of cancer
  • Lost income and loss of future earnings due to the health impacts of AFFF exposure
  • Pain and suffering related to the adverse effects of AFFF exposure

The potential for a large settlement fund by companies like The Chemours Company, DuPont, and Corteva for PFAS-related claims indicates the potential for significant compensation in Oregon AFFF cases.

This, coupled with the possibility of punitive damages in Oregon civil cases, could serve to deter manufacturers like 3M and Tyco from future negligent behavior regarding the manufacturing and marketing of toxic AFFF.

Filing an Oregon Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawsuit

If you intend to file an AFFF lawsuit in Oregon, it’s important to secure legal representation from attorneys who possess specialized expertise in environmental law and toxic torts. They can guide you through the legal process, which includes evidence collection, managing legal documents, and courtroom representation.

AFFF lawsuits in Oregon, along with other similar cases nationwide, have been consolidated in the District of South Carolina as part of multidistrict litigation (MDL). This format requires lawyers who are adept in handling complex legal proceedings for individualized compensation.

Types of Evidence To Present

For an AFFF lawsuit, the evidence required includes medical records, employment records, and expert testimony. Your attorney will guide you on how to compile and present these pieces of evidence to build a strong case.

Oregon Statute of Limitation

In Oregon, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years from the date of injury or discovery of the injury. This implies that if you believe your claim is valid, you must act swiftly to prevent losing the opportunity to file your lawsuit.

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Have you or a loved one been injured or exposed to a toxic chemical at work or in the home that has caused a severe life-threatening side effect, illness, disease, or death?

Get Your Free Consultation From Oregon Firefighting Foam Cancer Lawyers

The legal team at Schmidt & Clark, LLP is ready to stand by your side during these pivotal moments. Should you or a loved one suffer from injuries linked to firefighting foam exposure, reach out to us without delay.

Grasping your legal rights and determining your eligibility for a firefighting foam lawsuit is crucial. We offer complimentary consultations, and our no-win, no-fee promise means you incur no costs unless we secure a favorable verdict or settlement for you.



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