For decades, PFAS forever chemicals were a central component of aqueous film-forming foam, or AFFF, which has been in widespread use by the military since the late 1960s for putting out chemical fires. Sprayed during both training scenarios and actual emergencies, fire-fighting foam contained fluorinated PFAS chemicals. Since 1970, this substance has been used prolifically, with no regard to the risk of cancer from PFAS exposure.

Lawyers handling AFFF lawsuits believe persons and the family members of persons who have developed cancer from exposure to AFFF foam may be eligible for significant compensation. This page provides a comprehensive look at AFFF fire fighting foam.

Fire Fighting Foam

Fire fighting foam, also known as AFFF (aqueous film-forming foam), is used to extinguish chemical fires. When it is sprayed, it covers the surface of the burning material and forms a blanket that suffocates the fire. The foam creates an obstruction between the fuel and the oxygen that helps to prevent the fire from spreading out and reigniting.

AFFF is the most common fire fighting foam. For decades, AFFF has been used to extinguish Class B fires that involve flammable liquids such as cooking oils, gasoline, paints, or jet fuels. AFFF contains chemicals known as PFAS which are known to be carcinogenic to humans. PFAS are bioaccumulative, meaning they remain intact in the body and build up over repeated exposures.

Servicemembers and firefighters who were exposed to AFFF foam and developed cancer may be entitled to compensation.

AFFF Causes Cancer

Some of the recent studies by reputed agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the American Cancer Society, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer, have confirmed that exposure to chemical substances in AFFF can cause cancer. AFFF cancer includes kidney cancer, testicular cancer, thyroid disease, ulcerative colitis, prostate cancer, pancreatic cancer, bladder cancer, and liver cancer.

Firefighters and military personnel are more likely to be at an elevated risk of exposure to PFAS because they are usually the first responders to fires involving combustible liquids. When AFFF is used, the foam can spread to nearby water bodies, contaminating them with PFAS. Persons who use AFFF foam can also be exposed to PFAS through breathing, skin contact, and ingestion.

AFFF Foam Claims

AFFF Foam Timeline

The U.S. government has been aware of the dangers posed by AFFF since the 1970s. The timeline of the military's response to the threat of fire fighting foam is one of inaction and neglect:

As of 2020, all military operations had phased out the use of fire-fighting foam containing PFOA and PFOS, which are known as "long chain" PFAS chemicals. However, the new fire-fighting foam utilizes "short-chain" PFAS substances. Short chain PFAS substances also cause cancer and scientists warn they may be more dangerous than their precursors.

In comparison, PFAS fire fighting foam has been banned in Europe and safe alternatives are in wide use. At this time, the Pentagon acknowledges 401 sites where PFAS chemicals have been released into the ground. This information is incomplete, and no one knows exactly how extensive the problem actually is. Countless servicemembers and firefighters who were responsible for spraying the foam now face a risk for AFFF cancer.

Attorneys for AFFF foam lawsuits provide free, no-obligation consultations.

AFFF Foam Claims

There is no question that the use of AFFF foam containing PFAS has resulted in significant health concerns for firefighters and servicemembers. Lawsuits are now underway against AFFF manufacturers, as ongoing research reveals more thoroughly the detrimental effects on health from exposure to PFAS. Victims of AFFF cancer and their families should know that they have every right to sue AFFF manufacturers in court to pursue compensation for suffering, medical expenses and loss.

Some of the manufacturers facing litigation for producing harmful AFFF foam containing PFAS include:

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AFFF Lawsuits

Filing a lawsuit will allow you to hold the federal government accountable for damage it has caused you or a loved one, while also providing real compensation for your medical expenses, suffering and loss. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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