Is a Commonly Used Pesticide Safe for Human Use?
Multiple class action lawsuits have been filed against the manufacturer of a weed killer that people claim has made them sick. A Cape Coral man recently joined a lawsuit alleging that he used Monsanto’s Roundup weed killer regularly for 30 years and that exposure to the product’s main ingredient, glyphosate, led to his non-hodgkin’s lymphoma diagnosis. A class action lawsuit that was originally filed in federal court in Florida has since been transferred to a federal court in California.
What Is Glyphosate?
Glyphosate is a commonly used pesticide and the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup as well as other weed killers. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), almost 300 million pounds of this chemical is used every year by farmers, agricultural workers and other individuals. Scientists have not yet reached a consensus on whether glyphosate is actually a carcinogen or if it safe for human use.
Monsanto maintains that Roundtop does not cause cancer, while the International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies the pesticide as a probable human carcinogen. A panel of scientists assembled by the EPA in December 2016 said that the data is still unclear. While farmers suffer non-hodgkin’s lymphoma at higher rates than other professions, there is no consensus as to whether the cancer is caused by glyphosate exposure or another aspect of agricultural work.
Florida Products Liability Law
If you are injured by a defective product in Florida, then you might be able to file a products liability claim against the manufacturer, seller and/or distributor. Two general theories of products liability under Florida law are strict products liability and negligence. Strict products liability focuses on the product and negligence focuses on the manufacturer, seller or distributor (in addition to the product).
There are three types of product defects: design defects, manufacturing defects and marketing defects. A design defect is inherent in the design of the product. For example, if a manufacturer intends that a car have three wheels instead of four, that would be an obvious design defect (because the car might not operate safely on only three wheels).
A manufacturing defect is an unintended defect. If a car was accidentally manufactured with three wheels instead of four then that is a problem with the manufacture, and not the design, of the product. A marketing defect indicates a problem with the way the product is sold. For example, if a product does not contain adequate safety warnings or use instructions then that might constitute a marketing defect.
In an action claiming negligence, the suing party would have to prove that the manufacturer, seller and/or distributor violated a duty of care owed to the plaintiff.
Contact Us Today
Contact an Orlando personal injury attorney at The Pendas Law Firm today for a free consultation if you have suffered a product-related injury or illness. We will help you recover the compensation that you deserve.
The Pendas Law Firm also represents clients in the West Palm Beach, Tampa, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Jacksonville, Fort Myers, Daytona Beach and Bradenton areas.