Water pollution

For years, Chicago’s Kerr-McGee Superfund Site has been the site of environmental negligence and questionable business practices. Located just north of Joliet, this site is one of the most polluted Superfund sites in Illinois, this site is a prime example of what a corporations’ negligence can do to the environment and the health of those living near it.

The History of the Kerr-McGee Site in Chicago

The Kerr-McGee Superfund site has a long and troubling history of environmental negligence. This site was once home to a chemical plant operated by the Kerr-McGee Corporation, which was responsible for the production of various nuclear materials, including thorium, which is used in the production of nuclear fuel.

Unfortunately, the production process used by Kerr-McGee resulted in significant pollution of the surrounding environment. The company engaged in illegal dumping of chemicals, which contaminated the soil and groundwater in the area. The chemicals released by the plant included heavy metals such as cadmium, lead, and arsenic, which are highly toxic and pose a significant risk to human health.

Kerr-McGee operated the chemical plant from the 1930s until 1973, during which time the company continued to engage in illegal dumping and pollution despite knowledge of the harm being caused. The plant was finally closed in 1973, but the damage had already been done.

In the decades following the closure of the plant, numerous legal actions were taken against Kerr-McGee in an effort to hold the company accountable for its actions. In 2015, the company was ordered to pay over $5 billion in damages to clean up polluted sites across the country, including the Kerr-McGee Superfund site in Chicago.

Despite this legal action, the contamination and health risks associated with the Kerr-McGee site continue to persist, leaving many residents in the surrounding area concerned about their health and wellbeing. As such, many individuals and organizations are turning to environmental law firms like OnderLaw for help in seeking justice and compensation for the harm caused by Kerr-McGee’s actions.

The Chemicals Present at the Kerr-McGee Site

One of the most concerning aspects of the Kerr-McGee site is the presence of radioactive elements such as uranium and thorium. Both elements are naturally occurring and often used as fuel for nuclear power plants. Exposure to either of them can pose serious health risks to humans and, in certain situations, they can be incredibly harmful to both aquatic plants and animals like those found in the nearby Kress Creek and the West Branch DuPage River.

The presence of these radioactive elements at the Kerr-McGee site is due to the company’s mining operations. During the mining process, the ore containing uranium and thorium was separated from the rock and soil surrounding it. This left behind a large amount of radioactive waste that was not properly contained or disposed of.

Over time, the radioactive waste seeped into the soil and groundwater surrounding the site, contaminating the environment and posing a risk to public health. The contaminated water has even seeped into nearby residential areas, exposing residents to the harmful chemicals.

Despite the dangers of these radioactive elements, Kerr-McGee did not take adequate steps to ensure their safe containment and disposal. The company’s negligence has resulted in widespread environmental damage and health risks for those who live and work near the site.

Today, the Kerr-McGee Superfund site is a major focus for environmental law firms like OnderLaw. With decades of experience representing plaintiffs in environmental cases, OnderLaw is committed to holding companies accountable for their environmental negligence. The firm is currently exploring potential legal action against Kerr-McGee in an effort to secure compensation for those affected by the company’s activities.

Health Effects Associated with Exposure to Chemicals at the Kerr-McGee Site

Unfortunately, exposure to the uranium and thorium found at the Kerr-McGee Superfund site in Illinois can have serious health consequences. One of the most concerning health effects associated with exposure to these chemicals is the increased risk of developing cancer.

Uranium and thorium are both radioactive elements, which means they emit radiation as they decay. When humans are exposed to this radiation, it can cause changes to our DNA, potentially leading to the development of various cancers over time. Specifically, exposure to uranium has been linked to an increased risk of lung cancer, as well as cancers of the bone and liver. Thorium, on the other hand, has been associated with an increased risk of pancreatic cancer.

But it’s not just cancer that individuals may be at risk for when exposed to these chemicals. Radiation poisoning is another potential health effect that can result from exposure any radioactive materials. Radiation poisoning occurs when the body is exposed to high levels of radiation in a short amount of time. Symptoms of radiation poisoning can include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and a weakened immune system, and, in severe cases, radiation poisoning can be fatal.

It’s important to note that the health effects of exposure to uranium and thorium depend on a variety of factors, including the dose and duration of exposure, as well as individual factors like age and overall health. However, given the potential risks associated with exposure to these chemicals, it’s crucial that those who may have been affected seek medical attention and monitor their health closely.

At OnderLaw, we take these health risks very seriously. We believe that individuals who have been exposed to harmful chemicals through no fault of their own deserve justice and compensation for any harm they may have suffered. That’s why we’re committed to pursuing legal action on behalf of those affected by the Kerr-McGee Superfund site. By holding those responsible for the contamination accountable, we hope to bring about positive change for those affected and prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future.

Possible Legal Proceedings

The Kerr-McGee Superfund site in Illinois has been the subject of legal disputes for several decades, as it has caused significant environmental damage and health hazards to local communities. With the help of OnderLaw, you may be able to seek compensation for any damages caused by exposure to the hazardous materials found at the site.

There are several types of lawsuits that can be filed in response to environmental damage caused by the Kerr-McGee Superfund site. These include class-action suits, mass torts, and personal injury claims.

A class-action suit involves a large group of people who have been affected by the same issue, in this case, exposure to hazardous chemicals at the Kerr-McGee site. This type of lawsuit can be filed by a single individual on behalf of all the members of the group. It is an effective way for plaintiffs to pool their resources and increase their chances of winning a favorable judgment.

A mass tort is similar to a class-action suit, but instead of being represented by a single individual, each plaintiff has their own separate case. Mass torts are useful when there are individual issues unique to each plaintiff that would make it difficult to group them together in a class-action suit.

Personal injury claims may also be filed against Kerr-McGee. These are cases where an individual has suffered harm due to exposure to hazardous materials. In personal injury cases, the plaintiff seeks compensation for damages such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

It’s important to note that there are statutes of limitations in every state that determine how long you have to file a claim. These limitations vary depending on the type of claim and the state where the lawsuit is filed. If you fail to file a claim within the statute of limitations, you may lose your right to seek compensation for damages. That’s why it’s important to contact a lawyer as soon as possible to determine your options.

OnderLaw has experience in environmental law and toxic tort litigation, and can help you navigate the complexities of a legal proceeding related to the Kerr-McGee Superfund site. Our attorneys have successfully represented clients in similar cases, and we will work diligently to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

If you believe you have been exposed to hazardous materials at the Kerr-McGee Superfund site, don’t wait to contact OnderLaw. Our legal team is ready to help you understand your options and pursue the compensation you deserve.