It is hardly a secret to anyone in the firefighting community that there have been efforts to sue manufacturers and those responsible for firefighters being exposed to PFAS.
These chemicals are closely linked to cancer, and the related chemicals were found inside the firefighting foam and coats which are used frequently on jobs.
These are known as a turnout gear lawsuit and these lawsuits have been a major focus. PFAS is linked with many serious illnesses and an over-exposure becomes a speedy threat to life.
So, what should you do if you have been exposed, and how do you discover if you are eligible for a lawsuit?
Stick around and find out.
Reporting PFAS Contamination In Your Turnout Gear
If you think you have been exposed in dangerous amounts the first thing you need to do is contact an agency. You should look at the CDC to gain information, as well as the Environmental Protection Agency and also the National Institute of Environment Health Sciences as well.
You can report your exposure to the NIH, and the Environmental Protection Agency are currently doing research on PFAS, and would be grateful for your experience and information.
What Should You Do If You’ve Been Exposed
You should act fast after dangerous levels of PFAS are exposed to you. The faster the address it the better.
Here is what to do.
Get Treatment And Contact A Lawyer
You should immediately find a reputable doctor and get them to evaluate you. If you do so as soon as possible it may mitigate the damage to you and will prevent you from being liable for anything that happens post-exposure.
Get checked for potential illnesses like liver damage, cancer and high cholesterol.
Then you should file a firefighter PFAS lawsuit
Hire a lawyer who will help you through the steps legally. Having someone to represent you in court is paramount to getting you justice.
How To File A Firefighter Exposure Lawsuit
As you file the lawsuit you will need to prepare yourself.
First you will need evidence that will backup your claim. This can include medical records, a testimony from a witness, and any proof in document form of your contact with dangerous protective equipment or foam.
Collecting evidence is a good job already half done and will make everything easier for you and your lawyer as you progress with the lawsuit. No amount of evidence is too much, the more, the better.
Do You Qualify?
So, do you actually qualify? Well, the only true way to know is if you have used or been in contact with firefighting foam, or thermal liners in the turnout gear used, and this is high in PFAS.
If you have been in contact with either of these, and they turn out to be high in PFAS then you are likely to be eligible to take out a lawsuit and follow ahead with legal action against those who are responsible.
What Are Considered The Damages Of PFAS Exposure In A Lawsuit?
In any lawsuit you can claim damages. In terms of PFAS, they are similar to any other injury related case.
You may be able to claim any of the following as a result of PFAS exposure:
- Emotional Distress/ Poor Mental Health,
- Long Term Disability.
- Loss of Mental and/or Physical Capacity.
- Loss of Wages,
- Medical costs.
- Pain and Suffering.
Once you have your evidence, the lawyer helping you on your case will assess the overall damages you have suffered as a result. Then in the case this will be brought to light and upon winning the case you will be paid in terms of these damages.
What Are The Risks Of PFAS Exposure?
As your lawsuit goes on, you should also be mindful of the potential health problems that can occur. If you find symptoms of any of the following during your case be sure to get checked.
As if you suffer any physical repercussions of PFAS exposure, it may help your case and gain you further compensation you don’t want to miss out on.
- Kidney Cancer
- Lymphatic Cancer
- Thyroid Cancer
- Increased Cholesterol.
If you notice any symptoms related to any of these, you should seek out medical assistance immediately for the best chance of recovery. It is also worth noting that if you suffer from any of these as a result of the exposure you might also be eligible to sue those at fault for the exposure to PFAS.