Cleanup Workers Dying Before Their Time


We’ve been saying for about 70 days now that the human health effects of the oil spill will be much more serious than most people expect, and that any air-quality test samples taken by BP should become public immediately. But a recent report on CNN illustrates that the health impacts may be way, way beyond what anyone is being told.

A CNN source says that almost all of the people who worked on cleaning up the Exxon Valdez spill are dead. And the source told CNN that life expectancy for those who worked to clean up that oil spill is only about 51 years. I’d be counting my days.

This is a stop-the-presses moment. If even remotely accurate, which I assume it is, this means that people working on cleaning up the spill are literally in mortal danger from the toxic mess BP has brought into the Gulf. And it answers a lot of questions about why the company is so silent on so many environmental and air-quality monitoring results.

Stay tuned on this one, because in a spill where every bit of news seems to be bad news, this is absolutely terrible.

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Stuart H. Smith is an attorney based in New Orleans fighting major oil companies and other polluters.
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