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Vapor Intrusion - A dangerous environmental concern, says Weitz & Luxenberg

10-05-2006 07:06 PM CET | Energy & Environment

Press release from: Weitz & Luxenberg

Vapor Intrusion - A dangerous environmental concern, says Weitz

October 3, 2006, New York, NY--Communities across the United States are learning about the dangers of vapor intrusion—but many are learning far too late. The harmful phenomenon results when soil is contaminated with volatile chemicals such as dry cleaning fluids and petroleum. The vapors from the affected soil then seep up through the cracks and openings in the foundation of nearby homes and mix with the indoor air. The vapors decimate property values and endanger the welfare of families who unknowingly inhale the odorless fumes. Nationally-recognized mass torts and personal injury law firm Weitz & Luxenberg, P.C. is dedicated to holding polluters accountable for their pollution, and is focusing on helping individuals and communities harmed by vapor intrusion.

A forerunner in the legal fight against environmental polluters, the firm has worked with clients harmed by Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE), asbestos, chromium, fluoride, lead and PCE, among other toxins. We represent over 50 water providers whose wells have been contaminated with MTBE and several communities around the country for the personal injuries and property damage they have suffered as a result of groundwater and air pollution.

Of the firm’s emerging focus on vapor intrusion, Robin Greenwald, Head of the firm’s Environmental Toxic Torts Unit said, “People should feel safe to breathe in their own homes. We need to hold industry accountable for interfering with this basic right and make those responsible for causing the air inside homes unsafe to breathe pay for the damage they are causing to people’s health and property values.”

TCE (trichloroethene), a chemical used for dry cleaning, is of particular concern as it relates to vapor intrusion. The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) released a report on July 27, 2006 highlighting the risk of exposure to TCE through vapor pathways. The report supports the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) finding that TCE is a potential human carcinogen, and maintains that the weight of evidence on health risks has strengthened since 2001, when the EPA last issued a TCE toxicity evaluation.

People living near an area that has documented soil, groundwater and/or soil vapor contaminated with volatile chemicals should ensure that the potential for vapor intrusion has been, or is in the process of being, investigated.

People who have been injured by environmental pollutants can contact Weitz & Luxenberg. Interested parties should call the Client Relations department at 1 (800) 476-6070 or via e-mail by writing to You may also visit our website at

David Kufeld
Weitz & Luxenberg
120 Wall Street
New York, NY 10038

About Weitz & Luxenberg:
Weitz & Luxenberg, founded in 1986, is one of the leading plaintiffs, mass torts, product liability, and personal injury litigation law firms in America. A forerunner in the legal fight against environmental polluters, Weitz & Luxenberg has worked with clients harmed by MTBE and other toxins. The firm has played leading roles in national and local litigations involving asbestos, DES, silicone breast implants, medical malpractice, and general negligence, among others. The firm has won numerous cases involving dangerous pharmaceuticals, including Vioxx, achieving a $13.5 million verdict against Merck & Co. (docket No. ATLL129605).

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