In a recent lawsuit, the 3M Company paid a $9.1 million settlement to the United States government for manufacturing and distributing earplugs that it knew were defective to U.S. military service members. This wasn’t the first time 3M has made headlines for their product defects and negligence. Learn about 3M’s history of problems with product liability.
Scotchgard Water Pollution
3M recently settled a lawsuit with Minnesota’s Attorney General Lori Swanson for $850 million over a former Scotchgard ingredient poisoning the state’s drinking water. According to the lawsuit, 3M dumped chemicals at sites near Minneapolis for more than 40 years, which eventually made their way into wildlife and drinking water. 3M knew these chemicals were harmful, but hid the effects from regulators. Although 3M had phased out the particular chemicals involved—PFOA and PFOS, also known as PFCs—years ago, their chemical makeup did not degrade in that time, and continued to contaminate water sources. A recent study established links between PFCs and cancers, ulcerative colitis, and other health issues.
PFCs in Household Products
Recent evidence has surfaced that 3M knew about the health dangers of PFCs since the 1970s, yet continued to manufacture dozens of household products, including clothes to non-stick pans, with these chemicals. Even knowing this harmful chemical was present in blood samples across the country due to contact with their products, 3M decided to continue selling their toxic products anyway.
Product Liability Issues? We Can Help
If you have received an injury or illness from a 3M product or a product from another company, we’re here to help. Our Kansas City product liability attorneys can handle a wide variety of claims and we have successfully recovered significant compensation for clients.