Brain Cancer and Hazardous Workplace Environments

The long-disputed potential link between Pratt & Whitney’s North Haven plant and worker illness has finally come to a head. WHDH Channel Seven News reported on the findings of a research study involving the possible link between brain cancer and long term employment at Pratt & Whitney’s North Haven site. The findings of an 11-year study researching the risk of worker illness at Pratt & Whitney’s North Haven jet engine plant haven’t given survivors and their relatives any closure. The study reports that there is no link between any workplace risks and the employees that suffered from glioblastoma brain tumors.

Facts of the Case

• The study examined at least seven Pratt & Whitney plants in Connecticut.
• Between 1976 and 2004, 723 workers were diagnosed with tumors.
• There were 277 cases of brain cancer where tumors were malignant, benign or unspecified.
• 167 of those cases were at the East Hartford plant.
• 57 of those cases were from the North Haven site.
• Pratt & Whitney commissioned the $12 million study.

Pratt & Whitney had the financial wherewithal to produce a gigantic 11-year study disputing allegations that workers suffered a greater risk for brain cancer if they worked on the assembly line. At least 90 employees had filed workers’ compensation claims due to illnesses they said were related to working for Pratt & Whitney. The study seems to clear the company of any wrongdoing, but still leaves many questions unanswered.

Unresolved Questions About Workplace Safety at Pratt & Whitney

Although executives at Pratt & Whitney undoubtedly hope to put this matter to rest, families who have lost loved ones aren’t ready to give up. Many families who have had their loved ones die after years of faithful work believe the company’s North Haven site was causing brain cancer in long-term employees. These family members are still looking for answers. Were there any problems with research methodology? Could the numbers have been skewed by biased researchers? An experienced workers’ compensation attorney can help families who have lost loved ones due to unsafe working environments. An experienced lawyer can help look into the legitimacy of a study. It’s especially important to conduct due diligence when the company, who may be held accountable for wrongdoing, is commissioning the research.

The company employed more than 200,000 workers in all, so a lot of records need to be reviewed to reach proper conclusions about illness and the plant. Todd Atcherson, whose dad Charles died in of brain cancer at age 56 in 1998 after more than 25 years at Pratt & Whitney, said the company skewed numbers.

Elevated Health Concerns

Pratt & Whitney has shut down that plant and a few others. The company has changed production processes and has not had any recent safety problems. However, the past continues to haunt the company and families who need workers’ compensation lawyers to sort out the details. The only way for workers to win their battle for proper compensation is to retain a workers’ compensation attorney who has the knowledge and experience to get to the truth.

Workplace Illness

If you or a loved one has suffered from an illness that you suspect may have been caused by a workplace environment, contact the experienced MA workers’ compensation attorneys at Altman & Altman, LLP at (617) 492-3000 for a free case consultation.

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