3M Military Earplug Lawsuits
Attorneys for Injuries Caused by Defective Combat Arms Earplugs
From 2003 to 2015, Combat Arms earplugs were the standard issue equipment used to protect members of the military from hearing loss caused by explosions, aircraft, gunfire, and other loud noises they were exposed to in training and in the line of duty. They were also sold to the general public and used by industry workers, contractors, police officers, and others seeking hearing protection.
Unfortunately, it has come to light that these earplugs did little to protect users’ hearing. Hundreds of veterans have come forward with claims against Combat Arms earplug manufacturer 3M, maintaining that the defective earplugs did not maintain a tight seal, exposing wearers’ to dangerously loud sounds when they thought they were being protected. Thousands or even millions may have suffered harm from these defective earplugs.
3M Combat Arms earplugs have been linked to such serious side effects as:
- Hearing loss
- Loss of balance
If you used 3M Combat Arms earplugs in the military or as a civilian, you may be entitled to financial compensation for the pain and suffering you’ve experienced as a result of your injuries. Meyer Wilson is investigating claims involving 3M military earplugs, and we are standing by to see how we can assist you.
Combat Arms Earplugs Version 2 Defects
Combat Arms earplugs were originally manufactured by Acero, which was bought out by 3M in 2008. Two-sided, these earplugs were designed to block out extremely loud noises but allow softer sounds to pass through. The idea was to allow soldiers to hear commands but to block gunfire, explosions, or other damaging sounds. Unfortunately, the earplugs were designed to be too short and did not fit properly inside the ear. During use, the Combat Arms earplugs could loosen and become ineffective.
3M has faced claims that the company was aware of the design defect and yet did nothing to remedy it, failing to disclose this to the military and continuing to provide the earplugs to unsuspecting service members.
In July 2016, 3M agreed to pay the U.S. Department of Justice a $9.1 million settlement in connection with these allegations, but 3M did not recall the Combat Arms Version 2 earplugs. The company chose to stop selling them instead.
Consequences of Noise-Induced Hearing Loss
Noise-induced hearing loss, or NIHL, can have a serious impact on a victim’s life. It can cause temporary or permanent hearing loss of varying degrees, sometimes affecting specific tones or sounds, or affecting all sounds equally. Hearing aids may be required to magnify and control sounds, allowing the wearer to participate in normal conversations and daily activities.
Noise-induced hearing loss can also cause tinnitus, a condition characterized by a ringing, roaring, or bussing sound in the ears or head. Tinnitus can have profound effects, particularly if it is chronic and severe.
Seeking Justice for Combat Arms Hearing Loss
Noise-induced hearing loss is preventable. That is why military service members and others who are frequently exposed to loud noises use protection, such as the protection promised by 3M Combat Arms earplugs. If you used these earplugs and are experiencing tinnitus or hearing loss, Meyer Wilson may be able to help you seek justice. Compensation can cover hearing aids and treatment for your condition, as well as cover lost earnings, pain and suffering, and other losses or injuries you have experienced.
Discuss your 3M military earplug lawsuit with our attorneys today by calling (888) 592-8455.