In August of 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its updated National Air Toxics Assessment(NATA). The NATA is a screening tool that that the EPA uses to determine potential health risks, including cancer, that can come from breathing hazardous air pollutants. The data contained in the updated NATA actually came from air samples taken in 2014. One of the pollutants tested for was ethylene oxide. According to the EPA, if the cancer risk to an individual is no higher than 1 in 10,000 (or 100 in 1 million), then the risk is “acceptable.”
In the updated NATA, the EPA determined that there were 107 census tracts in the United States that were of concern. Two of those census tracts were in Georgia. One tract was the Sterigenics facility in Smyrna, GA and the other was the BD Bard facility in Covington, GA. presented a cancer risk of roughly 281.8 in 1 million, or nearly three times the acceptable risk limit. The Willowbrook tract had the highest cancer risk score in Illinois, and it placed in the 99.9th percentile nationally in terms of cancer risk.
However, the NATA was based on 2014 air sampling data. Due to concerns about ethylene oxide emissions at the Sterigenics plant in Willowbrook, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) conducted additional investigation and collected air samples from several areas surrounding the Sterigenics facility in Willowbrook inMay 2017.
In August 2018, the ATSDR issued a report about the testing done in Willowbrook. That report indicated that the cancer risk in Willowbrook was actually 6,400 in 1 million (or 64 in 10,000). In other words, the ATSDR determined that the cancer risk in the area was 64 times the acceptable risk limit. If those samples represent typical concentrations of ethylene oxide in the air, an elevated cancer risk exists for people who live and work near the plant. No testing has been done yet by the U.S. EPA or the State of Georgia Environmental Protections Division (EPD) around the Sterigenics plant in Smyrna, GA or Covington, GA but both have decided to begin testing soon. In addition, the local governments around the 2 Georgia plants hired private companies in August of 2019 to do independent air quality testing, and that will also get started soon.
OUR GEORGIA BASED LAWYERS HAVE THE EXPERIENCE NEEDED TO HELP YOU INVESTIGATE IF YOU HAVE MIGHT HAVE A CANCER CASE AGAINST BARD OR STERIGENICS
If you believe that you or a loved one has developed cancer or other health problems due to breathing air contaminated with ethylene oxide emitted by the Sterigenics plant in Smyrna or Bard in Covington, the attorneys at Dan Chapman & Associates LLC want to help you. We know that lawsuits are an important step in stopping wrongful conduct in addition to helping people recover compensation for injuries, harms and losses. We are aggressively seeking compensation not only for those who have been harmed by the ethylene oxide emissions in Georgia. We can provide an immediate investigation of your case, consult with highly knowledgeable experts and help you to understand and explore your legal options. You can count on our experienced and local legal team to protect your rights and pursue all compensation you deserve, including:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Loss of wages and diminished future earning ability
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- All other related losses.
CALL US NOW FOR A FREE, NO OBLIGATION CONSULTATION AT 770-918-1100 TO LEARN MORE.