Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers

2360 Main St, Susanville, CA 96130
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Bakersfield Paraquat Attorney

In 1964, paraquat was first registered as an herbicide in the United States. The product’s primary use is to kill weeds, and companies and people commonly use it in both agriculture and non-agriculture sites.

Once word spread regarding the strength and effectiveness of the weed killer, farmers began to rely on paraquat regularly since other weed killers had become ineffective over time.

Currently, farmers in the United States use over eight million pounds annually on a wide variety of crops. Unfortunately, studies have recently linked an increased risk of diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease, to paraquat exposure.

If you were exposed to paraquat and developed Parkinson’s disease or another illness, you may file a lawsuit to hold the manufacturer responsible for your illness and any related damages. Call the Bakersfield paraquat lawyers at Nadrich & Cohen today for your free consultation.

What Is Paraquat?

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Paraquat is a toxic weed killer that has been banned in 32 countries due to its harmful effects. However, licensed applicators are still able to use this toxic chemical in the U.S.

While paraquat may be an effective and powerful weed killer, it’s extremely toxic and very dangerous. Scientific studies suggest long-term exposure to paraquat can result in the development of Parkinson’s disease, sparking California paraquat lawsuits against the manufacturers of this harmful product.

Paraquat Exposure Risks

Any person who has come into contact with paraquat is at risk of adverse effects that accompany repeated exposure. Usually, agricultural workers and farmers are the most vulnerable. Other people who may be at risk of the harmful effects of pesticide exposure include:

  • Certified paraquat applicators
  • People who mix paraquat products
  • People who work in paraquat manufacturing plants
  • People who sell paraquat
  • People who live near farms that use these dangerous products

If you believe you’ve been exposed to paraquat products, an attorney can help you file a paraquat lawsuit. At Nadrich & Cohen, we will help you identify the source of the exposure. We can also represent your claim against paraquat manufacturers in court or during settlement negotiations.

Paraquat Risks Near Bakersfield

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Kern County is rich in agriculture, with primary crops including almonds, carrots, grapes, citrus, industrial hemp, pistachios, pomegranates, and more. While many people throughout the county rely on the health of their crops to earn a living, their paraquat use also puts the health of others in the vicinity at risk.

Despite holding “Spray Safe” events sponsored by the Kern County Farm Bureau, many residents have serious concerns about the risks of herbicide spraying – especially paraquat.

Residents write letters to local publications expressing their displeasure that they receive almost no advance notice of planned chemical applications, noting that one nearby area outside Bakersfield receives 1,000 or more paraquat applications, and they receive no warning.

Whether you work in the agriculture area in the Bakersfield area or simply live near an agricultural operation, you can have significant exposure to paraquat regularly, and it can affect your health. In too many people, paraquat exposure has caused life-changing and irreversible health issues like Parkinson’s disease.

If you believe you are in this situation, please reach out to our legal team as soon as possible. We can assess whether your condition stemmed from paraquat and take the legal action necessary to seek justice for you and your future.

At Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers, we handle claims stemming from the dangerous health effects of toxic substances like paraquat.

We obtained the following in similar toxic substance cases:

  • $14,250,000 for a young girl with a Stevens-Johnson Syndrome diagnosis due to taking Children’s Motrin
  • $5 million and $1,250,000 in separate cases, each involving clients with primary pulmonary hypertension from taking a popular diet drug

We handle all types of cases involving serious health effects of toxic exposure, and we can assess your rights.

The Effects of Paraquat Exposure

Chronic exposure to paraquat can be very dangerous to humans. Studies have shown that exposure can significantly increase a person’s chances of developing Parkinson’s disease. If exposure occurred while a person was a teenager or young adult, their chances of developing Parkinson’s disease are increased by 200% to 600%.

Paraquat exposure can also be fatal and can result in death 70% of the time. Fatal exposure occurs after inhalation, ingestion, or another form of direct contact.

Paraquat exposure induces oxidative stress. When this toxic chemical comes into contact with a living organism, it breaks the oxygen atoms from molecules found within the living organism’s cells. In humans, oxidative stress can be incredibly damaging and irreversible.

Herbicide Paraquat Toxicity

While scientists have linked many different herbicides to diseases and health risks, paraquat is considered one of the deadliest pesticides on the market. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, paraquat is highly toxic, and a single sip of this harmful weed killer may result in death.

Epidemiological studies have recently shown serious, long-term health effects of ongoing paraquat exposure when spraying, loading, mixing, or being near the product.

Three of the largest agricultural producers in the world, Brazil, China, and Europe, have paraquat banned or are phasing out use.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the agency took measures in the United States to control the immediate health risks linked to using this product, in the form of safer packaging, training, and warning labels. While these efforts can help to minimize the number of accidents associated with low-level exposure, unfortunately, they do not prevent the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

Paraquat Exposure Linked to Parkinson’s Disease

Parkinson’s disease is a type of degenerative brain disorder that causes difficulties with balance, slow movements, rigidity, and tremors. Both non-motor and motor symptoms worsen, making it difficult to carry out basic daily activities. While both men and women can develop Parkinson’s disease, it affects 50 percent more men than women.

Currently, one million Americans live with Parkinson’s disease, with as many as 60,000 new cases each year.

What is Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinson’s disease occurs due to the deterioration of nerve cells in the part of the brain that controls movement, known as the substantia nigra. When the nerve cells in that part of the brain become impaired or die, the result is fewer dopamine neurons. These important chemical compounds help the nervous system to deliver messages between nerve cells. Low dopamine levels result in issues with movement.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for Parkinson’s disease.

Recent studies connect the development of Parkinson’s disease to certain environmental exposures such as herbicide use.

Does Paraquat Cause Parkinson’s Disease?

Parkinsons and Paraquat

Over the past ten years, researchers have found a clear link between the development of Parkinson’s disease and exposure to paraquat.

In the recent past, the National Institute of Health conducted a study called the Farming and Movement Evaluation Report that used data from the Agricultural Health Study. The study found that paraquat users were 2.5 times more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease compared to people who had no exposure. They also found that paraquat dichloride exposure can cause oxidative stress, which can result in the loss of dopaminergic neurons.

A study on environmental toxins and Parkinson’s disease found that study participants sprayed with the chemical were twice as likely to develop the disease compared to the general public.

Another study found a link between Parkinson’s disease and paraquat exposure in people who possessed certain genetic traits. The study showed that exposure to the weed killer resulted in DNA damage and weak mitochondrial respiration.

Unfortunately, in a recent year, the Environmental Protection Agency issued a Proposed Interim Decision that would re-approve the chemical for use with certain safety measures in place. Currently, the use of paraquat is still legal in America for use by licensed applicators. However, Congress introduced many bills to seek the end of paraquat use in the country.

Common Symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease

If you had exposure to paraquat dichloride and have concerns that you developed PD, the first step is scheduling an appointment with your physician. Your physician will run tests and discuss symptoms you may be experiencing that could indicate you have developed Parkinson’s disease.

Common symptoms of PD can include:

  • Loss of balance
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion in the evening
  • Drooling
  • Reduced facial expression
  • Hand tremors
  • Extreme or prolonged stiffness
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Difficulty moving

If you have a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, contact a paraquat lawyer as soon as possible to learn more about your rights and if you’re eligible to have a paraquat lawsuit filed.

What to Do if You Develop Parkinson’s Disease

If your doctors diagnosed you with Parkinson’s disease, you must schedule a consultation with a Bakersfield paraquat attorney as soon as possible to determine if you’re eligible to file a paraquat lawsuit and pursue compensation for your illness, ongoing medical costs, pain and suffering and other damages.

Paraquat Lawsuits

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If your health declined due to exposure to paraquat, there are many reasons you should file a lawsuit.

The experienced paraquat attorneys at Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers can file a compensation claim. We will hold the manufacturers accountable for their conduct.

Who Can File a Lawsuit?

If you had exposure to paraquat and then received a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, contact a Bakersfield paraquat attorney at Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers today to determine if you qualify for a paraquat lawsuit.

Some people who may qualify to file a lawsuit include:

  • Landscapers
  • Pickers
  • Farmers
  • Growers
  • Agricultural workers
  • Licensed applicators
  • Anyone who works around herbicides and commercial weed killers

Financial Compensation in Paraquat Lawsuits

After a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, you must undergo treatment for the rest of your life. Unfortunately, this disease can be very debilitating.

Filing a paraquat lawsuit will help you to secure the compensation that will cover the cost of your long-term medical treatment. We will also obtain compensation for your pain and suffering, past and future medical bills, mental distress and loss of quality of life, in addition to other damages.

Our Bakersfield paraquat lawsuit attorneys represent agricultural workers and those who have been exposed to paraquat while living near areas where spraying happens.

We won’t charge you a fee unless we recover money for you. We only charge a portion of the money from the paraquat settlements we recover.

If you had paraquat exposure, call our law firm at 888-739-8634 for a free consultation to see if you qualify to file a paraquat lawsuit.

Grounds for a Bakersfield Paraquat Lawsuit

The central claim in a paraquat lawsuit will be that those who made and sold paraquat knew or should have known that paraquat is toxic and linked with Parkinson’s disease but failed to warn the public about it.

People filed almost 70 paraquat lawsuits against Syngenta and other paraquat manufacturers as of May 10, 2021, reported.

Over the years, the Environmental Protection Agency evaluated hundreds of studies regarding paraquat’s toxicity.

It has been known since at least 1933 that paraquat possesses redox (reduction-oxidation) properties:

It is a potent oxidant and readily goes through redox cycling when exposed to oxygen. Science has known since the 1960’s that these redox properties make paraquat toxic.

Evidence suggests paraquat’s redox cycling produces reactive oxygen species that lead to oxidative stress, damaging and killing dopaminergic neurons. These neurons produce dopamine, which the brain needs for motor function. The death of these neurons can be a cause of the motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

Scientists have found that paraquat, when given to mice, crosses the blood-brain barrier to destroy these neurons. In fact, scientists intentionally give lab animals paraquat to cause and study the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.

Numerous studies, including studies published in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2020, have found an association between paraquat and Parkinson’s disease.

Those who made and sold paraquat had a duty to be reasonably careful in making sure that paraquat was safe. This duty included doing enough product testing, staying aware of current scientific knowledge of any of their product’s dangers, and properly warning about any dangers linked with their products.

The failure of companies to do these things lets us pursue numerous claims in a paraquat lawsuit, including the following.

Negligence in Paraquat Lawsuits

Negligence is failing to be reasonably careful in the name of preventing harm.

Negligence is failing to do what a reasonably careful person would do in the same situation.

Negligence is also doing what a reasonably careful person wouldn’t do in the same situation.

A successful negligence claim in California requires someone to prove:

  • Someone behaved negligently
  • Someone suffered harm
  • The negligence caused the harm

It is negligent to fail to properly test how far paraquat can drift from where it is sprayed and how easily those around where it is sprayed can absorb it.

It is negligent to fail to properly test what kind of negative health effects occur in people exposed to paraquat.

It is negligent to fail to keep up with any scientific studies that find your product is dangerous.

It is negligent to ignore scientific studies that find that your product is dangerous.

It is negligent to fail to warn the public about scientific studies that find your product is dangerous.

Strict Liability and Paraquat Litigation

While we believe negligence has led to people developing Parkinson’s disease from paraquat exposure, strict liability claims don’t require you to prove negligence.

Those who make and sell products are strictly liable for injuries that happen due to their products if their products contain a manufacturing defect or a design defect. Products with a manufacturing defect are defective because something went wrong during production. Products with design defects, however, are defective when made and used correctly. Their design itself is defective.

Paraquat appears to contain a design defect because it is unsafe when made and used correctly since it can lead to Parkinson’s disease.

California law also holds those who know or should know their product is dangerous but fail to warn about it liable for any injuries caused by their product.

Frequently Asked Questions About Paraquat Exposure

The chemical herbicide paraquat, or paraquat dichloride, is a toxic herbicide that dates back to the 1960s. For decades, it has been used for commercial purposes to prevent weed and grass takeover on crops by farmers throughout the world.

Over the years, researchers have linked paraquat to many adverse health effects, including a progressive neurodegenerative disorder.

Just a small amount of paraquat can be fatal, but even if this is not the immediate result, the health impacts on the victim can be tremendous.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), exposure to paraquat can cause Parkinson’s disease, kidney failure, and other conditions, such as:

  • Heart failure
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver failure
  • Lung scarring
  • Coma
  • Seizures
  • Injury to the heart
  • Pulmonary edema
  • Respiratory failure

Aside from the lethal effects of paraquat, continual exposure to just minimal amounts of paraquat can increase one’s risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

Although any paraquat substance purchased in the United States has additives to prevent accidental consumption, products purchased internationally might appear clear and odorless, making them nearly impossible to recognize.

Therefore, it can easily be mixed with food and water without detection. Paraquat poisoning can also occur from skin exposure, especially from an open wound.

Inhalation is another method of paraquat exposure.

The danger of the chemical herbicide paraquat is far-reaching. In fact, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) classifies paraquat as a “restricted use” product, meaning that it can only be used by those who are licensed to apply the chemical.

Drinking just a thimble to a shot glass of the chemical can take a human life. Due to its lethal properties, many suicides and suicide attempts have been executed through the use of paraquat. At this point, there is no known antidote.

Several factors determine the level of danger to a person who comes into contact with paraquat, including:

  • Quantity of exposure
  • Method of exposure (ingestion is most likely)
  • Duration of exposure

When this substance comes into contact with the lining of the mouth, stomach, or intestines, direct damage will likely occur. Once inside, it is quickly dispersed to the other parts of the body, instantly causing damage to the lungs, liver, and kidneys.

Even with environmental exposure, paraquat is notorious for its link to a variety of health conditions, including Parkinson’s disease.

Do Pesticides Cause Parkinson’s Disease?

Environmental factors, such as pesticides and herbicides, may play a role in the development of Parkinson’s disease, a neurodegenerative disorder. Among others, paraquat is one such herbicide that has been linked to this disease. Paraquat, a restricted-use herbicide, is a fast-acting weed killer and, as such, is one of the most popular herbicides used on farms.

Gramoxone SL 2.0 is the most commonly used herbicide in the United States, and it contains paraquat.

Some of the other paraquat pesticide products are:

  • Para-SHOT
  • Helmquat
  • Parazone
  • Firestorm
  • Ortho-Paraquat
  • Quick-Quat
  • Devour
  • Blanco

Makers of many herbicides face lawsuits over the connection between the toxic herbicide and Parkinson’s disease.

You must meet with your physician at once if you have had any exposure to the toxic chemical paraquat and are experiencing symptoms. Just a small amount of paraquat can be fatal, and it only takes days or weeks for the exposure to take full effect. Exposure and ingestion of this substance can lead to long-term health issues and put you at a greater risk of Parkinson’s disease.

Immediate signs of exposure include:

  • Swelling and pain in the mouth or throat
  • Confusion
  • Dehydration
  • Seizures
  • Muscle fatigue or weakness
  • Breathing difficulties or respiratory failure

If you have a Parkinson’s diagnosis, cancer or another illness due to your exposure to paraquat products, or you believe you were a victim of paraquat poisoning, call our paraquat lawsuit lawyers as soon as possible.

Contact a Bakersfield Paraquat Lawyer Today at Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers

Jeffrey Nadrich
Bakersfield Paraquat Lawyer, Jeffrey Nadrich

If you have developed Parkinson’s disease due to exposure to the paraquat herbicide, you may be entitled to financial compensation for damages. You must take legal action as soon as possible. Contact Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers today at (661) 371-3588 to learn how our law firm will hold the manufacturers of paraquat responsible for your past and future medical expenses, pain and suffering and other damages related to your exposure to this deadly weed killer. There is no cost to you.

At Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers, we will hold the negligent manufacturer liable for the damages they caused, and we will work tirelessly to help you seek the compensation and justice you deserve.

Bakersfield Office

1105 Douglas Street
Bakersfield, CA 93308

(661) 371-3588