Senators want PFAS studies to include firefighters
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A bipartisan group of U.S. senators led by Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., and Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, are calling for federal health officials to take immediate action to address firefighter exposure to PFAS chemicals.
Twenty-one senators signed on to the letter sent Thursday to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR).
“As you are aware, PFAS chemicals are a byproduct of aqueous film forming foam (AFFF), a fire suppressant agent, and have been linked to a number of adverse human health effects. The potential ties between PFAS and various forms of cancer are of particular concern to military and civilian firefighters across the country who may have experienced long-term occupational exposure to PFAS due to the use of AFFF in firefighting and fire training exercises,” the senators said in the letter. “Several studies, including a multi-year study completed by CDC’s National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), indicate that firefighters are at a higher risk of cancer compared to the general population in the U.S.”