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Monday, July 8, 2013

We All Gotta Breathe (until we can't)

When asked if EV drivers could start a class action lawsuit for breathing fumes from exhaust producing vehicles, here was one well thought out response with references.
Vehicle exhaust is dangerous, dangerous stuff, and some studies (Szagun and Seidel. 2000) have estimated car exhaust kills five times as many people as car crashes, but there classes at far greater risk than EV drivers.

Bicyclists and pedestrians are at far greater risk than EV drivers, since the aerobic exercise of walking and cycling pulls pollutants into the deepest parts of the lungs, which is not the case when you’re sitting on your ass in an EV. Even worse, tailpipes are often mounted on the right-hand side, where they discharge directly into the bike lane or sidewalk, while the driver of the following car is on the left-hand side and thus is somewhat protected. (George. Monsere. Figliozzi. 2010)

Further, EV drivers only sit in traffic for an hour or two per day, while people living, working, or going to school along the highways are exposed to those pollutants 24/7. People who live near a freeway have asthma at much higher rates than the general population and are almost twice as likely to die from heart or lung disease (Hoek et al. 2002) while children are six times more likely to develop all types of cancers and eight times more likely to get leukemia (Pearson et al. 2000). Despite this, their lawsuits haven’t exactly stopped new highways from being built (or existing freeways widened) and if people can’t win lawsuits even with the ample medical research that exists demonstrating harm, EV drivers don’t have a chance.

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