Changing his previous stance, Dr. Craig Postlewaite, the U.S. military’s senior health protection official has recently admitted that some “servicemembers might suffer long-term medical problems as a direct result of exposure to smoke and fumes from open-air pits scattered throughout Iraq and Afghanistan.”
Further, after repeated denial by the U.S Military of any ill effects of burn pit exposure, now comes word that the Department of Defense has finally agreed to study burn pit exposure impact.
“Burn pits” are open-air pits that burn everything from shoes to tires to body parts, exposing anyone nearby to harmful toxins including arsenic, formaldehyde, and hydrogen cyanide.
Inhaling burn pit smoke has been linked to acute health effects including rare blood disorders, cancer, eye irritation, pulmonary and respiratory ailments. The DOD study comes on the heels of several lawsuits attacking Halliburton and KBR for their use of these pits. In fact, 32 lawsuits in 32 states have been filed across the country alleging injuries to our service people and military contractors as a direct result of exposure to burn pit emissions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
President Obama has vowed that the burn pits will not become another Agent Orange.
As concerned personal injury attorneys, we will be watching closely and reporting Department of Defense findings as this crucial burn pit investigation gets underway.
If you or a loved one has suffered rare blood disorders or respiratory ailments after serving our country or working abroad, please do not hesitate to contact one of our dedicated toxic tort attorneys.