Colianni & Leonard LLC

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Pittsburgh Lead Exposure Injury LawyersOver the past decade, multiple communities throughout the United States have encountered concerns about lead in drinking water. Flint, Michigan is one of the most prominent examples of this issue, and the crisis faced by residents of that community has led many other cities to examine whether their residents may be affected by toxic substances in the water supply. Pittsburgh is one such city, and in 2016, tests showed that the levels of lead in drinking water were above the limits set by state and federal authorities. Residents of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County may need to determine how they may have been affected by exposure to toxic substances and what options they have for addressing the harm they have suffered.

Ongoing Efforts to Address Lead in the Pittsburgh Water Supply

The limit for lead in drinking water that has been set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is 15 parts per billion. In 2016, tests showed that the water supply in Pittsburgh was 22 parts per billion, and since then, city and county officials have made efforts to reduce these numbers, including replacing lead water lines with copper pipes. More than half of the city's lead pipes have been replaced, and they are all expected to be replaced by 2026. To address ongoing issues related to lead contamination, the Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority (PWSA) has added treatments to the water supply that will coat the interior of lead pipes and help prevent water contamination.

These efforts have made a difference, reducing the levels of lead in the drinking water in Allegheny County to 10 parts per billion in 2019 and five parts per billion in 2022. However, the EPA has noted that there is no safe level of lead in drinking water, and ideally, it should be completely eliminated from the water supply. A two-year analysis of Allegheny County drinking water that was performed by the non-profit group Women for a Healthy Environment in 2021 found that lead had been detected in 80 percent of the water systems in the county.


Allegheny County Roundup Injury Lawyers

Roundup is the most commonly-used herbicide in the world, and it is regularly sprayed on crops in order to kill weeds. While it was originally introduced in 1974, its use has exploded since the 1990s, and today, over 250 million pounds of the substance are used each year. However, in recent years, concerns have been raised about the harmful effects of the chemicals in Roundup. Monsanto, the manufacturer of Roundup, and Bayer, which bought Monsanto in 2018, have settled more than 100,000 lawsuits by people who claimed to have been harmed by the exposure to Roundup, but the companies have refused to admit that the chemicals are harmful, and the product continues to be used.

Many of the lawsuits seeking compensation for injuries caused by Roundup exposure have been pursued by agricultural workers who were exposed to high levels of the herbicide on a regular basis. However, recent studies have shown that Roundup may also be harmful to others who are exposed to the chemical, including children. Families who may have been affected by toxic chemical exposure can work with an attorney to determine their legal options.


plant emitting toxic chemicals

Pittsburgh is home to many industrial facilities that often emit toxic chemicals into the air, soil, and water. These facilities are required to report their emissions to the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Unfortunately, with so many of these plants in Pittsburgh and the surrounding region, many people live close to these sites, and they may be exposed to toxic chemicals and other harmful substances. Recently, a plant operated by Shell has been accused of violating its permits and emitting much higher levels of toxic substances than is allowed.

Plant Emits High Levels of VOCs and Particulate Matter

The Shell Polymers Monaca plant officially opened in November 2022 despite the objections of environmental groups and local residents, although it had already been operating for several months at that point. It produces plastic pellets, and it was licensed to emit 522 tons of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and 159 tons of fine particulate matter each year. Two environmental groups, the Environmental Integrity Project and the Clean Air Council, have been monitoring the emissions from the plant, and they have announced their intent to sue Shell for violating its limits on VOC emissions.


Allegheny County Coal Plant Pollution Lawyers

Every year, millions of tons of coal ash are disposed of by power plants throughout the United States. This ash can contain high levels of toxic substances that can be hazardous to human health. For Pennsylvanians living near coal plants, this is a serious concern. Those who may have been exposed to toxic chemicals due to pollution by coal plants will need to understand how they may have been affected, and by working with an attorney, they can determine their options for pursuing compensation for the harm they have suffered.

What Is Coal Ash?

Coal ash is a byproduct of burning coal for electricity production. This waste is often dumped into ash ponds located near coal plants, and in the vast majority of plants throughout the United States, these ponds are unlined. This allows toxic substances in coal ash to enter groundwater, contaminating the water supply and being absorbed into the soil. This contamination can affect people for years or even decades.


Pittsburgh Personal Injury Lawyer

There are numerous situations where people may be placed at risk of exposure to toxic substances while working. The Pittsburgh area has many steel mills, industrial plants, and other workplaces where toxic chemicals and other dangerous substances are used. When the proper safety procedures are not followed, or when accidents occur, workers can be seriously injured. People may also experience occupational illnesses due to ongoing exposure to low levels of toxic substances. These injuries and illnesses can be very serious, and those who have been injured will need to understand their options for receiving compensation for the harm they have suffered.

Types of Occupational Diseases Caused by Toxic Substances

Dangerous chemicals and other substances can harm workers in a variety of ways, including:

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