Mass. firefighters sue 25 companies over cancer-causing chemicals in gear

The defendants include 3M, Buckeye Fire Equipment, Johnson Controls and Tencate Protective Fabrics


By Leila Merrill

BROCKTON, Mass. —  Over a dozen active and retired firefighters from Boston and other Massachusetts municipalities filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against 25 companies, claiming that the gear designed to protect them from fires is making them sick, CBS Boston reported.

The plaintiffs, which include 15 current or former firefighters and one spouse, are seeking monetary damages.

The court document states they are seeking “appropriate equitable and injunctive relief for harm resulting from exposure to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (“PFAS”) that were manufactured, designed, sold, supplied, distributed and/or contained in products manufactured, designed, sold, supplied and/or distributed by each of the Defendants, individually or through their predecessors or subsidiaries.”

The defendants include 3M, Buckeye Fire Equipment, Johnson Controls and Tencate Protective Fabrics.

“We wear it 75 percent of the time on shift, we want to be ready to respond to an emergency at all times,” said Joe Marchetti, former deputy chief of the Brockton Fire Department.

Marchetti was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2016. Elevated levels of PFAs were detected in his body in December. 

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