In June 2000, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced the banning of most uses of Dursban, also known as chlorpyrifos, because of concerns the pesticide was harmful to the public health, particularly children.
A number of lawsuits have been filed over the years against Dow Chemical and other companies that produced Dursban. The EPA cited concerns over possible neurological damage and birth defects, while plaintiffs claimed a variety of maladies such as cancer, infertility, hepatitis, pancreatitis, paralysis and mental retardation.
If you or someone you know suffered health problems due to exposure to Dursban, you may want to contact a Dursban lawyer experienced with product liability lawsuits. Kline & Specter, PC, hasmore than 40 attorneys (several of whom are also highly regarded doctors) who have the expertise to litigate Dursban lawsuits. At the time it was banned, Dursban was the most widely used household pesticide in the United States, with more than 800 varieties of lawn, garden, household and termite products. It also was used to treat agricultural products.
The EPA reached an agreement with the pesticide’s manufacturer to stop production for nearly all household uses and the vast majority of termite-control uses. It also stipulated a steep reduction in the level of allowable pesticide residues on certain foods popular among children, such as apples and grapes.
The agency also required that Dursban use be phased out in areas where children would be most likely to be exposed – schools, daycare centers, parks and recreation areas, stores and malls.
Initial adverse health effects from overexposure to Dursban were characterized by nausea, headaches, vomiting, diarrhea and general weakness. But more serious ailments have also been claimed, especially in children and infants at birth.
As early as 1994, officials in New York state noted problems with Dursban and reached an agreement with Dow Chemical to stop advertising that the product was safe. In 2003, New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer filed a lawsuit alleging that a Dow subsidiary, Dow AgroSciences, violated the agreement. Dow paid a $2 million penalty to settle the lawsuit.
Dursban, whose main ingredient is chlorpyrifos, once was a big seller for Dow. It was widely used in new construction prior to foundation construction.