Dioxin Developments

January 25, 2017 | Commercial Litigation | Complex Torts & Product Liability

Upstate New York County Legislators Support National Firefighter Cancer Registry

Legislators in the upstate New York county of Onondaga have voiced their support for a registry that would track cancer cases among firefighters.

Supporters of a federal bill, The Firefighter Cancer Registry Act, have estimated that as many as three out of five career firefighters die from cancer as a result of on-the-job exposures.

They contend that a cancer registry for firefighters would provide researchers “with the tools and resources they need to better understand this startling statistic and explore innovative prevention protocols.”

A news story about the Onondaga County legislature’s vote cited one firefighter’s statement that he is “exposed to fumes that contain dioxin, benzene, formaldehyde, and asbestos.  Firefighters are being diagnosed with cancer at higher rates than any other profession out there.  Boston right now is seeing two out of every three firefighters going to be diagnosed with cancer throughout their life.  We know that it’s taking 13 to 15 years off our life.”

Richard Hanna, a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Utica, New York, has sponsored a bill in the House to create a registry for these purposes.

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Traces of Dioxin Reportedly Found in Some Wells Near San Jacinto River Waste Pits

According to local news reports, the Texas Department of State Health Services has discovered traces of dioxin in some wells near the San Jacinto River Waste Pits.

The report, from Fox 26 in Houston, said that independent well testing found dioxin in three wells near the San Jacinto River Waste Pits that included traces of 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (“TCDD”), “a specific form of the toxin that could only have come from the nearby Superfund site known as the San Jacinto River Waste Pits.”

The station said that the state estimated a “low to moderate increase in cancer risk” for those with “substantial exposure” to water from two of the wells.

For further information, please contact James V. Aiosa, Paul V. Majkowski, Lawrence S. Han, or your regular Rivkin Radler attorney.

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