Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB’S) exposure causes serious injuries
“In Anniston, entire neighborhoods have been torn down and fenced off because of PCB pollution, and many residents have high levels of PCB’s in their blood,” (CNN). Nearby the town of Anniston is the Monsanto plant, which is now closed. The plant used PCB’s religiously before they were banned from the United States in 1977. Claims are still being filed by people who worked in the factory or people nearby the factory who have been stricken ill by a PCB-related sickness.
Monsanto eventually paid a total of $40 million to the residents of Anniston after a lawsuit was filed linking Monsanto for PCB-related illnesses in the city.
PCB’s do not degrade, so even though the United States banned their production in 1977, residents are still at risk of PCB exposure today. Weitz & Luxenberg believes that PCB exposure is a serious issue. We want to hear your case and give you a free legal consultation regarding PCB-related injuries.
What are PCB’s?
Polychlorinated biphenyls, commonly known as PCBs, are manufactured organic chemicals containing 209 individual chlorinated compounds. They usually present themselves as oily liquids or solids, and the color ranges from yellow to colorless. PCB’s cannot be smelled or tasted. They cannot be found in nature, despite being organic. These chemicals are fire resistant and thus make great source material for insulation and cooling agents as well as lubricants for electrical equipment.
How you can be exposed to PCB’s
There are several ways to be exposed to PCBs. They include, but are not limited to the following:
- Food: Fish, especially those that are predators or bottom feeders, are subject to containing PCB’s. When negligent companies dispose of their equipment of chemicals containing PCB’s into a bay area where the water is nearby a commercial fish farm, the fish will ingest that water. Once the public eats the fish, we, in turn, ingest PCB’s.
- Surface Soils: Contaminated water seeps from manufacturing plants and becomes runoff, which seeps into the top levels of soil. The contaminated soil can find its way into food if near or used by farms.
- Drinking Water & Groundwater: As PCB’s are not soluble in water, they are not often found in groundwater. However, some submersible pumps in well water have been recalled because the components were manufactured with PCB’s. Over time, these pipes could start to degrade and bits of material containing PCB’s can find their way into our drinking water.
- Indoor Air: Old fluorescent bulbs may have PCB-containing transformers or ballasts. Once these devices fail, we become exposed to leaked PCB’s.
- At work: Industrial accidents and/or hazardous waste accidents may expose you to PCB’s. Firefighters at a particularly high risk because of their work with old burning materials, which can expose them to PCB inhalation.
Health injuries caused by PCB exposure
Some of the adverse health effects of PCB exposure are:
- Heart disease
- Reproductive problems
- Reduced sperm count
- Birth defects
- Immune suppression
- Endocrine disruption
For pregnant women, there is a special risk of defects in your unborn child. These are inclusive of but not limited to:
- Lower birth rate
- Smaller head circumference
- Depressed responsiveness
- Impaired visual recognition
- Poor short term memory
- Weight gain deficits
- Reduced IQ
- Difficulty paying attention
How Weitz & Luxenberg can help you
In short, PCB’s are a disaster and can cause irreparable harm to those who have the misfortune of coming in contact with them. If you or someone you love has been directly affected by PCB exposure, let Weitz & Luxenberg fight for your rights. Simply fill out the form on this page for your free PCB lawsuit evaluation. With over two decades of experience in toxic torts and millions of dollars in favorable verdicts and settlements, Weitz & Luxenberg is confident that we can provide you with the legal support you need to get the financial compensation you deserve.
Wisconsin Department of Health Services: http://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/eh/hlthhaz/fs/PCBlink.HTM
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