The Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”), the Consumer Product and Safety Commission, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) are investigating a link between artificial turf and cancer or other illnesses. These investigations come after numerous people who have been exposed to artificial turf have been diagnosed with serious health conditions, including lymphoma and leukemia, cancers of the blood.
Artificial turf (also known as AstroTURF, synthetic turf, or artificial grass) is a widely used substance. It is present in thousands of sports fields, playgrounds and parks throughout the United States. Artificial turf typically contains tiny black particles known as “crumb rubber,” used as filler between synthetic grass blades. Because “crumb rubber” comes from old tires that have been pulverized, artificial turf likely contains the same toxic materials that are in tires.
The toxic chemicals found in tires can include lead, cadmium, arsenic, dioxins, PCBs, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (“PAHs”), and many other harmful compounds. Exposure to those substances increases a person’s risk of developing cancer, birth defects, and other serious injuries
Children who play sports on artificial turf fields are believed to be at the greatest risk, since they often pick up the rubber particles, and can inadvertently ingest them. Numerous reports have surfaced indicating that many high school soccer goalies, who regularly come into contact with “crumb rubber” when they dive for the ball, experience a high exposure rate to the material. Goalies report that “crumb rubber” particles are frequently lodged in their cuts and scrapes, and can get stuck in their eyes or mouths.
Several studies have analyzed potential health hazards associated with artificial turf and crumb rubber. In one study, researchers in Connecticut measured the concentrations of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the air above artificial turf fields. They found that the artificial turf fields “off-gassed” hazardous chemicals, including benzene, methylene chloride, and PAHs.
Another study, published in 2013, found that one sample of turf contained a “large concentration” of lead and chromium. The researchers expressed concern that “as the turf material degrades from weathering, the lead could be released, potentially exposing young children” to the dangerous substance.
Notably, the EPA and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) previously determined that there was insufficient research evidence to suggest a link to illness from exposures to artificial turf. However, as reported by NBC News, they have since decided that these findings were based on “limited” studies. Now, both agencies, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will conduct investigations to address the potential health effects of artificial turf.
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from exposure to crumb rubber in artificial turf.
Phillips & Paolicelli LLP is a nationally recognized Plaintiffs’ law firm, whose attorneys have devoted decades to representing families in personal injury, medical malpractice, environmental, and wrongful death cases. Attorneys at Phillips & Paolicelli LLP have experience in a wide variety of cases involving exposures to toxic chemicals, including for example, lead, mercury, solvents, PAHs, benzene, and numerous other toxicants, in the workplace or environment
If you or a loved one have suffered injuries or death associated with exposure to crumb rubber in artificial turf, please call us at toll-free at 1-855-220-6770 for a free consultation with one of our attorneys. You can also send us a message online by clicking here to inquire about a potential case, to learn more about how we can assist you with a personal injury lawsuit or any other type of personal injury claim.
Personal injury claims from exposure to crumb rubber other toxins, like all lawsuits, have time limits that are short and strictly enforced. If you believe that you or a loved one has a claim, or are interested in speaking to a professional to explore a possible suit, you should seek legal advice immediately. Contact Phillips & Paolicelli LLP today.