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Florida Tobacco Lawsuits: Secondhand Smoke Can Be Deadly

Did you know that when you inhale secondhand smoke you absorb nicotine and other toxic chemicals in your system the effect on your body is not much different from what it would be if were the one smoking? Also known as passive smoke and environmental tobacco smoke, secondhand smoke is classified by the US government as a “known human carcinogen” that can cause cancer. What you may not know is that if you or someone you love fell ill because of secondhand smoke, you may have grounds for a Miami, Florida tobacco lawsuit. According to the American Cancer Society, each year secondhand smoke affects nonsmokers by: • Causing 46,000 heart disease-related deaths and 3,400 lung cancer fatalities • Reducing lung function and causing other breathing problems, including chest discomfort, mucus, and coughing • Worsening asthma episodes for children • Causing more than 750,000 middle ear infections in kids • Upping the risk that a pregnant woman will give deliver a low-birth weight infant or suffer a miscarriage or stillbirth. Meantime, a report from the Surgeon General in 2006 concluded that secondhand smoke: • Causes the premature deaths of nonsmokers of all ages • Increases the chances a child will develop sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) Secondhand smoke exposure can be found anywhere that someone is smoking. This can include the workplace, shopping centers, schools, daycare centers, restaurants, and on public transportation. Fortunately, Florida bans smoking in all enclosed work areas and spaces open to the public (stand alone bars are exempt). That said, secondhand smoke continues to be a problem, creating illness and havoc for victims. If you believe that your illness or your child’s affliction was caused by secondhand smoke, you should speak with a Fort Lauderdale tobacco lawyer right away. You may not realize this but even brief exposure to secondhand smoke can cause instant harm to one’s health. For example, a few years ago, the family of a girl who developed asthma sued the apartment complex where they lived because secondhand smoke wasn’t prohibited in outdoor common areas. In the 90’s, flight attendants that filed a class action lawsuit against the tobacco industry because they had been repeatedly exposed to secondhand smoke while on the job received a $49 million settlement. A worker that gets sick or suffers health complications from exposure to secondhand smoke while doing his or her job may have also grounds for a Florida workers’ compensation case. According to the University of Minnesota’s Division of Periodontology web page: • Secondhand smoke is the number three cause of early death and disability. • Secondhand smoke ranks after smoking and alcoholism. Also, If you or someone you love developed cancer or some other illness that you believe was caused by smoking cigarettes, you may have grounds for a Florida tobacco lawsuit against the cigarette maker. Related Web Resources: American Cancer Society Smoking and Tobacco Use, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention More Blog Posts: $2.4M Palm Beach County Wrongful Death Verdict Awarded to 87-Year-Old Lake Worth Widow, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, April 13, 2011 $3.375 Million Florida Wrongful Death Verdict Awarded in Tobacco Lawsuit Against Philip Morris USA and RJ Reynolds, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, March 1, 2011 Palm Beach Tobacco Litigation: Smokers’s Widow Gets $2.2M Award and $270K in Punitive Damages from Philip Morris and RJ Reynolds, Florida Injury Attorney Blog, September 1, 2010 Contact our Miami tobacco law firm. We also have offices on Coral Springs, West Palm Beach, Naples, Boca Raton, and Hollywood, Florida.

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