Tennessee Benzene Exposure Lawyers
- Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)
- Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (NHL)
- Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS)
Benzene is a naturally occurring chemical that is emitted in small concentrations by volcanoes, fossil fuels, and forest fires. It is also synthetically manufactured widely in the United States as it is used to make other chemicals utilized in the production of many common household, industrial, and agricultural goods. However, despite its natural origins and wide use, benzene can be as deadly as the forest fires that produce it.Who is at Risk?
Firefighters and people who work in any industry that produces Nylon, plastic, rubber, chemicals, shoes, lubricants, dyes, detergents, drugs, explosives, petrochemicals, or pesticides are exposed to hazardous levels of benzene. Painters are also at risk. This naturally occurring chemical is a known human carcinogen and has been implicated as a potential cause of leukemia, particularly Acute Myeloid Leukemia, as well as other conditions such as anemia, immunity depression, decreased ovary size in women, and chronic-fatigue-syndrome.
Benzene exposure is not limited to those who work in industrial settings, however. We all encounter benzene when we breathe emissions from burning coal and oil, motor vehicle exhaust, and evaporating gasoline at gas stations. Cigarette smokers inhale benzene with every puff, and, depending on the water quality of the place we call home, we all may have had a benzene-laden sip or two of that clear liquid. Some soft drinks have also recently been found to contain toxic levels of benzene.How can Benzene Affect Me?
Low levels of benzene exposure can cause drowsiness, dizziness, rapid heart rate, headaches, tremors, confusion, and unconsciousness. In addition to these mild to moderate effects, complications can occur.Known Complications of Benzene Exposure
Benzene is a known carcinogen. Long term exposure can cause serious, or life threatening, complications:
- Leukemia, especially acute myeloid leukemia
- Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
- Multiple myeloma
- Immune system damage
- Bone marrow damage
According to research, women typically absorb higher levels of benzene than men. Once the toxin is absorbed, it is rapidly distributed in the body, and typically accumulates in fatty tissues.Carcinogenic Properties
Benzene causes the cells of the body to not work properly. Researchers believe one of the ways that benzene causes cancer is by damaging DNA contained in the bone marrow. As a result of the available evidence, multiple agencies have classified benzene as a carcinogen. These agencies include:
- International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)
- National Toxicology Program (NTP)
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),
- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
As a Nashville benzene exposure lawyer, we know that heavily industrialized areas present the greatest risk of high benzene levels. This is especially true for areas that have a large amount of oil refineries.The Top Ten States with Contaminated Sites
- New Jersey - 113 Sites
- California - 98 Sites
- Pennsylvania - 95 Sites
- New York - 86 Sites
- Michigan - 65 Sites
- Florida - 55 Sites
- Texas - 50 Sites
- Washington - 49 Sites
- Illinois - 44 Sites
- Wisconsin- 39 Sites
Tennessee is also home to a number of toxic waste sites containing benzene. You can search toxicsites.us to explore the interactive map using real time data from the EPA. As a benzene exposure lawyer in Tennessee we are accepting cases in and outside of the state.What Should I do if I Think I Have Been Exposed?
If you work in any of the industries noted above, are exposed to high levels of gasoline, coal, or oil emissions, smoke cigarettes, or live in an area that may have benzene-contaminated water, seek an evaluation from a healthcare professional. A doctor can detect benzene in your system through a breath, blood, or urine analysis, but each of those tests must be done shortly after exposure.
If you have any of the above symptoms or a diagnosis of cancer, leukemia, or other blood-related health problems and think it may be related to benzene exposure, do not hesitate to contact one of the Nashville Benzene Exposure Lawyers and the Higgins Firm. Employers are responsible for providing safe and healthy places for workers to do their jobs; exposing professionals to dangerous levels of known carcinogens is a betrayal of that responsibility. A trustworthy lawyer can help you hold your employer accountable for his or her negligence and ensure that you get the care and compensation you deserve.
Contact us online or call us at 800.705.2121 to set up a FREE consultation to discuss your legal options.