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?
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
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.
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?
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
- Confusion in the evening
- 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.
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.
Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers
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:
- 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, medtruth.com 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.
Frequently Asked Questions About Paraquat Exposure
Contact a Bakersfield Paraquat Lawyer Today at Nadrich & Cohen Accident Injury Lawyers
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.
1105 Douglas Street
Bakersfield, CA 93308