Issue: Lung and other cancers linked to diesel exhaust
New Research Concludes Definite Link Between Cancer and Diesel Exhaust
Diesel engine exhaust has now been definitively linked to causing cancer in humans. A panel of experts working for the World Health Organization (WHO) concluded in June 2012 that diesel exhausts definitely cause lung cancer. After a week-long meeting of international experts, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a part of the World Health Organization (WHO), classified diesel engine exhaust as carcinogenic to humans (Group 1), based on sufficient evidence that exposure is associated with an increased risk for lung cancer. WHO based its findings on research in high-risk workers including railway workers.
Similarly, American scientists have also found an increased risk of developing lung cancer in workers exposed to diesel fuel exhaust. See “Diesel Exhaust in Miners Study: A Nested Case–Control Study of Lung Cancer and Diesel Exhaust” by Debra T. Silverman, et al., JNCI, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Vol. 104, Issue 11, June 6, 2012.
At-Risk Occupations For Diesel Engine Exhaust Cancers: Railroad Workers, Miners, Truck Drivers and Truck Drivers
For decades, industry has relied upon diesel engines as a “cheaper” alternative to gasoline powered vehicles and ports and train depots have widely used heavily polluting diesel engines in trucks, cranes, ships, trains and other equipment. In the process, industry needlessly over-exposed countless workers, drivers, conductors, engineers and others to cancer causing pollution in doses sufficient to cause cancer and in doses many times those of the civilian population.
Working with large equipment powered by diesel fuel is common to ports and train operations and all workers with a history of such exposures who have contracted cancer should look closely at their potential rights.
If you have been exposed to diesel exhaust at your current or previous railroad job and have developed lung or bladder cancer you may be entitled to compensation. Even if you were or are a smoker, your lung and/or bladder cancer may still be related to your exposure to diesel fuel exhaust.
Legal Rights of the Injured: Focus On Railway Workers and Their Rights Under Federal Law (the Federal Employers Liability Act or FELA)
Among a sick rail worker’s rights is the potential right to pursue a claim under the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA), 45 U.S.C. § 51 et seq. (1908). FELA is a United States federal law that protects and compensates railroaders injured on the job.
Congress passed FELA in response to the high number of railroad deaths in the late 19th century and early 20th century. Under FELA, railroad workers who are not covered by regular workers’ compensation laws are able to sue companies over their injury claims. FELA allows monetary payouts for pain and suffering, decided by juries based on comparative negligence rather than pursuant to a pre-determined benefits schedule under workers’ compensation.
FELA was not intended to be awarded automatically. Unlike State Workers’ Compensation Law, FELA requires the injured railroader to prove that the railroad was “legally negligent,” at least in part, in causing the injury. After proving negligence, the injured railroader is entitled to compensation. Such compensation can be greater than that which would be provided by State Worker’s Compensation for non-railroaders.
Contact Lieff Cabraser
If you or a family member have been injured by exposure to diesel exhaust, please use the form below to contact a personal injury attorney at Lieff Cabraser by sending us a message or call us toll-free at 1 800 541-7358 and ask to speak to injury attorney Fabrice Vincent.
We will review your claim without fee or obligation, and Lieff Cabraser agrees to protect your name and all confidential information you submit against disclosure, publication or unauthorized use to the full extent under the law.