“Fifteen people in a middle-income neighborhood near an airport in Southampton, New York — seaside playground of the rich and famous — are suing 3M Co. and other makers of a chemical called PFOS that went into a foam used to fight fires on the tarmac. The plaintiffs say they’ve ingested PFOS as well as PFOA, which results when PFOS and other agents in the foam degrade. The airport was designated a Superfund site in September.
The lawsuits seek to build on a 2012 report that linked PFOA to six diseases, including certain types of cancer. In May 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which doesn’t regulate the chemicals, lowered the level of exposure it advised. It cited studies linking PFOS and PFOA with low birth weight, accelerated puberty, cancer and immune and thyroid disorders.
The suits allege 3M and others knew, or should have known, of the harm, citing internal reviews of personnel safety that began in the mid-1980s, and didn’t warn purchasers.”