With an impressive track record of successfully representing individuals and communities who have been exposed to toxic chemicals, Williams Cedar continues to fight for victims whose water, soil, air, or work environment has become polluted by harmful chemicals. Our dedicated and tenacious legal team has a reputation for winning landmark cases that recover sizable financial compensation for clients who have suffered from serious, life-threatening health conditions due to the exposure to toxic chemicals.
A toxic tort is a type of personal injury lawsuit that an individual, or group of people, can file if they have been harmed by exposure to a hazardous substance. Occupational toxic tort cases are among the most common types of toxic tort because of the fact that industrial workers are more likely to suffer from long-term exposure to harmful chemicals, like asbestos, than residents. In some cases, the plaintiff is an individual who has become injured or sick due to toxic exposure. Other times, a class action lawsuit is filed on behalf of a group of people.
The following are examples of common environmental toxic tort cases we handle:
Toxic exposure occurs when pollutants or toxic chemicals seep into the soil or drinking water. Oftentimes, this occurs as a result of the following:
- Leakage from underground tanks
- Discharges from landfills
- Pollution from industrial facilities
- Train derailments
This can have devastating consequences, particularly when potentially disease-causing chemicals contaminate the drinking water or if underground pollution causes vapor intrusion, which can allow toxic gases to affect the air quality of nearby neighborhoods.
The following are examples of the most frequently seen toxins in environmental cases:
- Trichloroethylene (TCE)
- Perchloroethylene (PCE)
- Perfluorinated compounds (PFCs)
- Vinyl chloride
- Hexavalent chromium
Clean, uncontaminated drinking water is something that most people in the United States take for granted. Yet, some areas such as Flint, Michigan, Hoosick Falls, New York, Petersburg, New York, and Willow Grove, Pennsylvania have water that is highly contaminated, causing serious illnesses in many of the residents, including small children. The severity of the resultant crises in towns like these have resulted in residents being unable to use their home water supply for any purpose, often for months.
Unfortunately, Flint is not the only place affected by contaminated water. This natural resource, which is essential to our survival, is being threatened by things such as changing weather patterns, pollution, oil spills, fertilizers and pesticides, and other harmful chemicals that have been allowed to seep into our waterways and soil. The following are examples of some common contaminants found in water:
- Petroleum-based compounds
- Methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE)
- Lead, mercury, and other metals
- Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)
- Perfluotooctane sulfonate (PFOS)
- Trichloroethylene (TCE)
- Tetracholoethylene (PCE)
- Volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
- Animal waste
Benzene is a chemical carcinogen that is commonly found in oil based paints, degreasers, gasoline, and other solvents. Certain industries are at a greater risk of benzene exposure, including those that manufacture shoes, paint, adhesives, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, plastics, detergents, and packaging material. Chronic exposure to benzene can cause certain types of cancer, including leukemia, lymphoma, bone marrow cancer, multiple myeloma, and other blood-related cancer. Even minor exposure to this toxic chemical can cause health problems such as headaches, dizziness, drowsiness, and vomiting.
PFOA and PFOS Contamination
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluoroctane sulfonate (PFOS) are part of a family of compounds knowns as polyfluoroalkyl chemicals, which are potentially harmful to humans. In fact, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established a health advisory for them due to the health risks that they can cause, including:
- Thyroid disease
- High cholesterol
- Ulcerative colitis
- Kidney and testicular cancers
- Liver tissue damage
- Immune deficiency
- Complications with pregnancy
These harmful chemicals have been used for years in a wide range of commonly used products, including:
- Water-resistant clothing
- Coatings for paper and textiles
- Fire-retarding foams
- Food packaging
- Cleaning products
In recent years, oil spills have caused extreme damage on our country’s coastlines. This type of pollution can have a profound impact on the environment, on wildlife, on businesses, and certainly on human beings as well. The worst of these disasters involve crude oil. This kind of toxic sludge can have an especially severe impact on waterfowl and animals, and it is extremely difficult to clean up. When there are high winds, oil slicks can spread for miles in the ocean. When oil spills occur on land, they can cause long-term sediment contamination.
Most oils contain carcinogens that vaporize into gas, and they can have a devastating impact on health that may be long-lasting or permanent. Oil spills can also rob fishermen of their livelihood, can close or destroy businesses, and can have a decades-long impact on those who live and work within the range of contamination.
An oil spill can affect your health, your income, your business, and your property. If you have you have suffered an impact on your health, property damage, or any kind of economic damage because of an oil spill, we can help.
Domestic Heating Oil Spills
It’s a sad fact that the retail suppliers of home heating oil frequently “misdeliver” the product, and spill heating oil onto and into the property and homes of their customers. A single spill of this type can result in the mandatory evacuation of the homeowners and their families, permanently damage the structure, and diminish the value of the property. Lawyers at Williams Cedar have obtained significant verdicts and settlements for the victims of home oil spills, forcing the responsible parties to compensate our clients for their loss of the quiet enjoyment of their properties.
Environmental Lawyers of Williams Cedar Fight Tirelessly for Victims of Toxic Exposure
If you or a loved one has been injured or become seriously ill as a result of exposure to a toxic material, do not hesitate to contact the experienced environmental lawyers at Williams Cedar. We are on your side and will aggressively pursue the maximum financial compensation to which you are entitled. To schedule a free consultation, call our Philadelphia offices at 215-557-0099 or our Haddonfield offices at 856-470-9777, or contact us online.