The toxic Agent Orange herbicide that became famous for its use in the Vietnam War has the potential to cause health conditions for more than just ground troops who served in the Vietnam War. As the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) further investigates the long-term effects of exposure to Agent Orange, they are also learning that the chemical had the potential to harm more than just the servicemembers who were in areas where the defoliant was sprayed.
The VA’s public health website lists several instances where Vietnam veterans may have been exposed to Agent Orange without their knowledge. The following areas and service types are presumed to have been exposed to Agent Orange:
- Stationed in Vietnam between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975;
- Serving on a ship operating on the inland waterways of Vietnam between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975; and
- Serving in the Korean demilitarized zone between April 1, 1968 and August 31, 1971.
The following areas and service types are listed as possible situations where a servicemember may have been exposed to Agent Orange:
- “Blue Water Veterans” who served on open sea ships off the shore of Vietnam and set foot on Vietnam land or operated on inland waterways between January 9, 1962 and May 7, 1975;
- Serving at Thailand military bases between February 28, 1961 and May 7, 1975;
- Serving at military bases outside of Vietnam that may have been used for herbicide tests and storage of Agent Orange; and
- Crew members of C-123 plants flown after the Vietnam War.
Vietnam veterans in the latter four categories will require more substantial documentation that they have reason to suspect they were exposed to Agent Orange during their service and that the exposure is now causing their health conditions. The VA maintains a listing of U.S. Coast Guard and Navy ships that are known to have transported Agent Orange, as well as a listing of health conditions connected to herbicide exposure.
Agent Orange exposure is a concern for many Vietnam veterans and their children. At the Law Offices of LaVan & Neidenberg, P.A. our veterans’ disability attorneys are here to help when the VA denies your claim for benefits. Contact our veteran’s disability rights firm today – 1-888-234-5758.