Diesel fuel is a fossil fuel that is refined from crude oil. It’s used in large and powerful engines like those in trucks, trains, heavy construction equipment, and ships. When it’s burned in those engines, exhaust fumes are emitted. We all breathe those emissions at work, on roadways and even at home. Some people are exposed to diesel fumes more than others, but there are strong indications that those emissions are carcinogenic.
Cancer research on diesel exhaust fumes has been performed in both laboratories and people. Laboratory studies strongly suggest that changes in cellular DNA result from diesel exhaust fumes. Those are the types of changes that are necessary for cancer to develop. Studies on humans are more difficult to gauge because levels of exposure are hard to measure. The International Agency for Research on Cancer is part of the World Health Organization. Based on the findings of both laboratory and human studies, it has classified diesel fuel exhaust as a human carcinogen. The US Environmental Protection Agency has classified diesel exhaust fumes as being likely to be carcinogenic to humans.
Other Recent Findings
The National Cancer Institute, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health conducted a study involving more than 12,000 mine workers and how diesel exhaust fumes might have affected them. An increase in cancer rates was found, and higher exposure to the fumes was linked with increased rates. For miners with heavy exposure, lung cancer deaths tripled in one study and quintupled in another one. This is an example as to why an exhaust cancer lawyer may be needed.
Diesel exhaust fumes are suspected to be linked to several other forms of cancer. If you’ve been heavily exposed to diesel exhaust fumes, and you have been diagnosed with cancer, contact an exhaust cancer lawyer at Diesel Injury Law to arrange for a free consultation and case evaluation.