Reports Show Toxic PFAS in Drinking Water

October 25, 2022 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman
Reports Show Toxic PFAS in Drinking Water

You Could be Drinking PFAS Contaminated Water

The water that we drink is something that most don't pay much attention to. It is a resource that we take for granted and is probably one of the most important nourishing factors in our daily lives. It takes disasters like the one that occurred in Flint, Michigan to remind us that when our water is not up to safe standards then many can suffer. Recently, concern over the safety of drinking water has grown due to the controversy surrounding poly and perfluoroalkyl substances also known as PFAS. These chemicals have been found to be not only toxic but also present in a disturbing amount of water sources that people rely on for safe drinking water.

What are Poly and Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)?

There are actually over 4000 different synthetic chemicals that fall under the classification of PFAS. These chemicals are characterized by their carbon and fluorine bonds which are exceptionally strong in the world of organic chemistry and afford these chemicals very useful properties. PFAS are used in a wide array of products and applications such as waterproof clothing, food packaging, non-stick pans, paints, stain-proof fabric, and adhesives. PFAS has been used since the 1940s and only recently have begun to be phased out due to the negative attention that comes with the use of these substances.   Odds are that you have come into contact with household products that utilize PFAS or have some in your home at this moment. Studies have shown that the vast majority of Americans have traces of PFAS in their blood. This can potentially be caused by physical contact with PFAS, inhalation, and the ingestion of PFAS contaminated food and water. New research by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), shows that traces of PFAS have actually become common in the groundwater of many communities near manufacturing centers that utilize and produce these chemicals.

PFAS Refuses to Break Down

The reason that PFAS has managed to find their way into the bodies of so many Americans is partly because of PFAS pollution and how widespread their use in everyday products is but also because of the longevity of these substances. Since carbon-fluorine bonds are so strong, PFAS have exceptionally long half-lives. This means that PFAS are extremely resilient against breaking down over time which has led to them being known as "forever chemicals". In fact, it is estimated that modern PFAS will easily last over 100 years without breaking down. It is because of this that PFAS manage to runoff into the water supplies of many communities and end up getting ingested by the populace. 

PFAS Toxicity Causes Health Issues Like Cancer

PFAS lasting forever and ending up in our bodies is one thing but their harmful effects are another grave matter entirely. PFAS have become infamous for their carcinogenic effects that significantly increase a person's chances of developing cancer. Many studies have been conducted and the general consensus is that PFAS at the very least increase your chance of developing cancer. You can easily develop a number of other severe health issues relating to your reproductive system, liver, kidney, etc. as well. Exposure to PFAS has been linked to the following health issues.
  • Kidney (renal) cancer
  • Testicular cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Bladder cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Lymphoma
  • Neuroendocrine tumors
  • Prostate cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Colorectal cancer (colon and/or rectal cancer)
  • Reproductive Issues
  • Birth Defects
  • Stunted Growth
  • Liver Damage
  • Thyroid Disease
  • Immune System Problems

PFOA and PFAS Chemicals

Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) are two very dangerous examples of PFAS that have harmed many Americans because of the negligence of chemical companies. These substances are responsible for the massive damage caused to many communities that are located near chemical plants. The pollution of the ecosystem with these chemicals has led to many people developing health problems and children being born with severe defects. The most popular case of this was covered in the feature film, Dark Waters in 2019 which detailed the true story of a lawyer named Robert Bilott who uncovered the horrifying pollution and damage to a West Virginia community knowingly caused by Dupont.

Lawsuits Over PFAS Exposure

Unfortunately, the damage done by PFAS has not been limited to a few towns located near chemical plants. A wide array of people have been put at risk because of PFAS that has been found in water supplies across the US at dangerous levels. Many people have also developed severe health problems when they have been exposed to PFAS in the form of firefighting foam. Aqueous film-forming foam is a commonly used firefighting tool that has been in use since the 60s by the military, airports, and many other civilian firefighters. Firefighting foam not only affects firefighters but also can contaminate water sources and harm people in nearby communities. About 400 military sites that utilize firefighting foam have had their water sources contaminated with PFAS.  Naturally, this widespread damage caused by PFAS has resulted in many to take legal action to not only seek compensation for their damages but to also hold those whose negligent actions harmed so many accountable for what they have done. There is overwhelming evidence that indicates that major chemical companies like Dupont and 3M knew exactly how harmful PFAS is yet they not only continued to sell and pollute with these substances but they also have actively tried to cover up the danger as well all in the name of saving profits. Many lawsuits have been filed by states dealing with water crises and people dealing with the effects of PFAS exposure. Consider speaking to an attorney if you have reason to believe your cancer was caused by exposure to PFAS. 

Seek an Experienced Florida Product Liability Attorney

 We rely on the producers of various chemical products to provide us with the proper safety information necessary to ensure that those using their product do so aware of any potential risks to their health. If you have developed cancer or another severe illness because of a company's product that contained dangerous ingredients you were unaware of, you may be able to seek compensation for damages you suffered by filing a product liability lawsuit.  Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA has been assisting those that have suffered at the hands of negligent companies for years by representing injured plaintiffs in product liability lawsuits. Do not hesitate to contact our Clearwater office about your case. We offer free consultations to those that have found themselves in this terrible situation. Our attorneys can assist you in building your case, calculating the damages you've suffered, negotiating settlements, and representing you at trial if need be. The lawyers of Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA will walk you through every step of the process and maintain close communication with you in regard to your case's progress. We provide the resources and experience of a larger law firm while also giving each case the personal touch and investment one would expect from a smaller firm. Call us for a free consultation today at (727) 451-6900 or fill out a contact form online. Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA 800 North Belcher Road Clearwater, FL 33765 (727) 451-6900  


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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