This case involves several otherwise healthy firefighters who died from non-hereditary cancers. These decedents all worked in the same district building that housed the defendant fire department. In addition, roughly one-third of the firefighters who worked in this building over the last 15 years have been diagnosed with cancer. The facility was known to have severe black mold conditions, particularly in the sleeping quarters. The firefighters also worked in conditions that exposed them to chemicals without sufficient ventilation. The building suffered numerous bed bug and rodent infestations over a 15 year period. The firefighters would continue working in the building while the exterminators sprayed chemicals without being provided respirators or ventilation. A toxicology expert was sought to opine on the possible causative links between the decedents’ cancers and the known toxic conditions of the district firehouse.
Question(s) For Expert Witness
- 1. Please discuss your experience linking cancers to toxic conditions similar to those in this case.
- 2. Can you discuss what specific chemicals are causing the diseases presented?
Expert Witness Response E-022427
I am quadruple board certified in medical toxicology, occupational medicine, preventive medicine and family medicine. I am an assistant clinical professor of medicine at a prestigious university and the medical director for the occupational health service at a large general hospital. I am the assistant medical director for a state poison control system. I provide causation analysis, specifically for toxins for the department of industrial relations as a qualified medical examiner in toxicology. I routinely review occupational exposures and cancer claims. I would suggest looking into the pesticides used, as well as any building contamination with PCBs or TCE. Black Mold and asbestos have not been linked to the cancers presented. I have previously reviewed a case with 20+ plaintiffs with environmental exposure and specific cancer diagnoses. I also review cases of individual occupational and environmental exposure as well as toxic injury.