AFFF is a fire suppressant that was devised by the U.S. Navy and the 3M company in 1966. Since then, military firefighters have been regularly using it for jet fuel and petroleum fires. Still, because it sometimes contains 98% PFAS, it is highly toxic both to the environment and to the health of those who come in contact with it. Not only do PFAS persist in the environment for a long time, but they also stay in the body for years following exposure, being able to cause many diseases, including cancer. While Fort Bragg is a Superfund site, cleanup activities are not ongoing at the military base.
What toxic agents are present on Fort Bragg?
At the moment, PFAS are the only known contaminants at Fort Bragg. Out of this group of chemicals, PFOS and PFOA have the strongest association with cancer. The current safe exposure limit to both is 70 ppt. However, recently, the Environmental Protection Agency has proposed significantly lower maximum limits – 0,02 ppt for PFOS and 0,004 for PFOA. According to the proposed rule, at Fort Bragg, the PFOS level exceeds the safe exposure limit by over 1,100 times, and the PFOA level eclipses it by 6,400 times.
Even in small amounts, PFAS can cause terrible diseases. They are currently present in the blood of 97% of Americans. Still, military firefighters and veterans might have considerably greater concentrations, as they were exposed to PFAS firsthand during active duty. Consequently, they should keep a close eye on their health and seek medical attention as soon as they notice unusual symptoms. Because the misdiagnosis rate is high in veterans, looking for a second opinion is also recommended if you believe you developed a disease.
What diseases can you develop following toxic exposure at Fort Bragg?
While there are many diseases that can stem from toxic exposure, only certain diagnoses make veterans and family members eligible for compensation. This is because there must be a strong connection between toxic exposure and the disease that can be supported by medical evidence. If you were stationed at Fort Bragg for one cumulative year or longer and came to struggle with any of the following illnesses, you might qualify to file a military base toxic exposure claim:
Our attorneys will gladly help you determine whether you are eligible to file a claim if you are in this unfortunate situation, as they have over 30 years of experience in handling these cases. The legal process is simple and will mostly take place over the phone. We will prioritize the claims of veterans, as we understand that many need the financial compensation to afford the treatment they need, which is usually expensive.