Firefighting Foam

Firefighters, airport workers, chemical plant workers and U.S. military service members routinely exposed to aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF), more commonly known as firefighting foam, are filing lawsuits against the companies that manufactured and sold the foam, alleging that exposure to toxic chemicals in the foam caused them to develop testicular cancer, pancreatic cancer, kidney cancer and other types of cancer. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with cancer following occupational exposure to firefighting foam, contact an experienced firefighting foam cancer lawyer today to explore your possible compensation options.

Firefighter Foam Lawsuit

Firefighting Foam Lawsuit Information

Product liability lawyers across the country are investigating cases on behalf of individuals who were diagnosed with cancer after occupational exposure to chemical-based firefighting foam. As useful as it may be in extinguishing jet fuel and petroleum fires on ships and at airports and military bases, firefighting foam has been linked to an increased risk of cancer due to toxic exposure to the harmful chemicals used to make AFFF. Unfortunately, without proper warnings about the potential for exposure to AFFF to cause cancer, firefighting foam was used for decades by the military, commercial airports and firefighters, and is still being used in some locations. As a result of their long-term exposure to the chemicals in AFFF, firefighters, airport workers, chemical plant workers, military personnel and others who used firefighter foam are now being diagnosed with various types of cancer. The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs has begun warning veterans about the potential risk of pancreatic cancer, prostate cancer, testicular cancer, breast cancer and kidney cancer they could face as a result of exposure to chemicals in firefighter foam and those who have already been diagnosed are pursuing legal claims. If you or a loved one is a firefighter, airport worker or U.S. military servicemember and exposure to PFAS caused your cancer, you may be able to seek financial compensation through a firefighting foam lawsuit.

Reported Side Effects of Firefighting Foam

  • Testicular cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Kidney cancer
  • Bladder cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Neuroendocrine tumors

“Those who served as airport or military firefighters are at particularly high risk of PFAS exposure. Until 2018, the Federal Airport Administration (FAA) required airports to use PFA-containing foam following U.S. Navy guidelines”

What is Firefighting Foam?

Firefighting foam, or aqueous film-forming foam, is a foam product that has been widely used for decades for the rapid suppression of petroleum and jet fuel fires. The foam works by forming a blanket that smothers the fire, depriving it of the oxygen it needs to burn and thus quickly extinguishing even large fires. AFFF is made using per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) like perfluorooctane acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), which are manmade chemical compounds that have been used in commercial products since the 1940s. Because of their ability to quickly suppress petroleum-based fires, the chemicals have been used to make firefighting foam used by firefighters, airport workers and members of the U.S. military for more than half a century, and some are still being used, despite growing concerns about the potential risks the chemicals pose for human health and the environment.

How a Firefighting Foam Lawsuit Can Help

Filing a product liability lawsuit against the makers of toxic firefighting foam can help cover the cost of:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future earning capacity
  • Medical monitoring
  • Property damages
  • Economic losses
  • Loss of consortium
  • Wrongful death
  • Funeral and burial costs
  • Pain and suffering

History of Firefighting Foam

The trouble with PFAS/PFOA/PFOS is that they can accumulate in the human body and remain there for long periods of time, and long-term exposure to the chemicals at high concentrations has been associated with serious adverse health consequences, including certain cancers. Exposure to toxic PFAS chemicals in firefighting foam can occur through oral ingestion, absorption through the skin or inhalation through exposure in the atmosphere, and those at the highest risk for exposure to potentially harmful PFAS in firefighting foam are firefighters who served in the U.S. military and those assigned to airports, where firefighting foam was the standard for suppressing petroleum and jet fuel fires. In fact, the Navy and other branches of the U.S. military have used AFFF since at least the 1960s, to put out emergency fires and even during training exercises and non-critical missions, and the Federal Airport Administration (FAA) required the use of firefighting foam at airports up until 2018.

PFAS-containing firefighting foam has been sold for decades in the United States as a safe and effective fire suppression product, but we know now that the same qualities that make PFAS in AFFF great for extinguishing flammable liquid fires also make the chemicals persist in the environment. Once PFAS are released into the environment, they can contaminate soil, groundwater and surface water, and contamination of this kind has been found in higher concentrations near airports, military bases, local fire departments and other places where firefighting foam was used extensively. PFAS chemicals are so ubiquitous, in fact, that they have been dubbed “forever chemicals,” and serious concerns have been raised about toxic levels of PFAS in the environment, in the products we use on a daily basis, and even in our bodies. The U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry has reported finding PFAS chemicals in nearly every blood sample they take. And a 2018 report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) linked PFAS chemicals to cancer, thyroid disease, liver damage, birth defects and other adverse health effects.

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