NC State University – Poe Hall Contamination Attorneys

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A shadow has been cast over NC State University with the discovery of elevated levels of PCBs, a known carcinogen, in Poe Hall. This contamination has forced the closure of the building, displacing faculty, staff, and students, while raising serious health concerns.

The presence of PCBs poses a significant risk to those who may have been exposed. These chemicals have been linked to various health problems, including some cancers. The university community deserves answers and, more importantly, protection.

Here at Edwards Kirby, we understand the gravity of this situation. Our team of experienced lawyers has a proven track record of holding institutions accountable for negligence that puts people at risk. We understand the complexities of environmental contamination cases and can help you navigate the legal landscape to seek the compensation and support you deserve.

We encourage anyone with concerns about PCB exposure at Poe Hall to contact Edwards Kirby today for a free consultation. You deserve to protect your health, have your voice heard, and explore all available legal options.

If You or A Loved One Has Been Injured Call Edwards Kirby Today!


About The Poe Hall Contamination At NC State University

In November 2023, NC State University faced a concerning situation with the discovery of high levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) within Poe Hall, a building that housed numerous classrooms, faculty offices, and administrative spaces. The Poe Hall contamination has significantly impacted the university community and raised serious health concerns for individuals who spent time in Poe Hall and were exposed to dangerous PCBs.

Timeline of Events:

Note: This situation remains fluid, and we expect further developments as the investigation continues and decisions are made regarding the future of Poe Hall and the overall well-being of the NC State University community.


Understanding PCBs: The Chemicals Involved With Poe Hall

The presence of Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) in Poe Hall raises serious public health concerns. As your legal advocate, let’s take a closer look at these alarming contaminants, on an atomic level:

Chemical Composition: PCBs are a class of human-made organic chemicals consisting of carbon, hydrogen, and chlorine atoms. The specific arrangement of chlorine atoms on the molecule determines its physical and chemical properties, leading to a diverse group of PCB variations.

Past Applications: In 1979, PCBs were banned in the United States due to growing health concerns. Prior to the ban, PCBs were commonly used as follows:

Environmental Persistence and Health Risks: The very properties that made PCBs useful in industry – their stability and resistance to degradation – also make them a persistent environmental contaminant. They don’t readily break down in the environment and can accumulate in the food chain, particularly in fatty tissues of fish and animals. Here’s why their presence at Poe Hall is so concerning:

The potential health risks associated with PCB exposure within Poe Hall necessitate a thorough investigation and appropriate action on behalf of the entire NC State community.

The PCBs Identified at Poe Hall

News reports indicate that the primary type of PCB found at Poe Hall is Aroclor 1262.

Aroclor 1262: Manufactured by Monsanto, Aroclor 1262 is a specific class of PCB containing a higher percentage of chlorine (around 62% by weight) compared to other PCB mixtures. This higher chlorine content is relevant because it influences several key aspects:

  • Source: Aroclor 1262 was commonly used in sealants, caulking materials, and some paints. This suggests the contamination at Poe Hall might originate from building materials used during construction or renovation.
  • Persistence: In general, PCBs with higher chlorine content tend to be more persistent in the environment. This means Aroclor 1262 may have lingered within Poe Hall for decades, potentially accumulating in dust and building materials.
  • Toxicity: While the exact toxicity of Aroclor 1262 can vary depending on the specific chemical composition, research suggests it may be associated with health risks. This includes an increased risk of developing various cancers, as well as potential developmental and neurological problems.

Importance of Further Information: While the presence of Aroclor 1262 paints a concerning picture, a complete understanding of the situation requires additional details. Ideally, we would like to know:

  • Specific locations: Were PCBs found throughout the building, or were they concentrated in specific areas like caulking around windows or doorways?
  • Levels of contamination: How much higher were the PCB levels compared to the EPA’s safety standards?
  • Presence of other PCB types: While Aroclor 1262 is a major concern, knowing if other PCB mixtures were also identified would provide a more comprehensive picture of the potential health risks.

Having a clearer understanding of these details is crucial for evaluating the full extent of the contamination and the potential health risks faced by the NC State community.

  • Carcinogenic Potential: Extensive research classifies PCBs as probable human carcinogens. Long-term exposure has been linked to an increased risk of various cancers, including liver, lung, and stomach cancers.
  • Developmental and Neurological Effects: Studies suggest that exposure, particularly during fetal development or early childhood, can harm the developing nervous system and immune system. Potential consequences include learning disabilities, behavioral problems, and decreased cognitive function.
  • Other Health Issues: Exposure to PCBs has also been associated with a range of other health problems, such as skin conditions, respiratory issues, and hormonal disruptions.

Health Implications Associated With the Poe Hall Contamination

The presence of PCBs at Poe Hall raises significant health concerns for anyone who spent time in the building. Here’s a breakdown of the known health risks associated with PCB exposure:

Types of Exposure:

  • Inhalation: Airborne PCB dust particles could be inhaled, particularly if the contamination was caused by crumbling materials or ongoing construction activities.
  • Ingestion: Accidental ingestion of PCB-contaminated dust is a potential risk.
  • Skin Contact: Direct contact with PCB-contaminated surfaces could allow PCBs to enter the body through the skin.

Acute (Short-Term) Health Effects:

Chronic (Long-Term) Health Effects:

Severity of Risks:

The severity of health effects depends on several factors, including:

  • Duration and Level of Exposure: Higher exposure levels and longer periods spent in the building increase the risk of health problems.
  • Individual Factors: Age, genetics, and overall health can influence how individuals react to PCB exposure.


Anyone who spent significant time at Poe Hall before its closure should be aware of the potential health risks. While the immediate health effects may be mild or even absent, long-term concerns, particularly the increased cancer risk, are significant.

Here’s what you can do:

  • Schedule a Doctor’s Appointment: Discuss your concerns about PCB exposure and any potential health risks with your doctor.
  • Monitor Your Health: Be aware of any new or unusual symptoms.
  • Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle: Healthy habits like a balanced diet, regular exercise, and adequate sleep can help strengthen your immune system and potentially reduce long-term health risks.

The situation at Poe Hall is concerning, but proactive steps can promote your well-being. If you have further questions or require legal guidance, Edwards Kirby is here to help.

Poe Hall Cancer Associations & Treatment Options

The discovery of PCB contamination at Poe Hall has understandably caused significant anxiety within the NC State community. PCBs are classified as probable human carcinogens, meaning long-term exposure increases the risk of developing various cancers. While reports of 100 cancer cases potentially linked to Poe Hall are alarming, it’s important to understand the following:

  • Direct Cause vs. Increased Risk: Attributing specific cancers solely to PCB exposure at Poe Hall is complex. PCBs can increase the risk of cancer, but other factors like age, genetics, and lifestyle choices also play a role.
  • Time Since Exposure: The risk of developing cancer from PCB exposure often manifests after prolonged periods, sometimes decades.

However, this doesn’t diminish the potential health threat. Here’s what you can do:

  • Consult a Doctor: If you spent significant time in Poe Hall before its closure, schedule a consultation with your doctor. Discuss your concerns about PCB exposure and any potential health risks.
  • Early Detection is Key: Regular cancer screenings are crucial for early detection and treatment. Discuss a personalized screening plan with your doctor based on your age, family history, and overall health.
  • Treatment Options: Treatment for PCB-related cancers depends on the specific type and stage of cancer diagnosed. Common treatment options include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and immunotherapy. Your doctor will guide you through the most appropriate course of treatment.

Edwards Kirby Can Help: If you’re concerned about your health due to PCB exposure at Poe Hall, we understand the additional stress you may be facing. Our legal team can help navigate potential legal options to protect your rights.

Remember, while the situation is concerning, proactive measures can help safeguard your health. Don’t hesitate to seek medical advice and explore your legal options.

Disclaimer: This information is for general knowledge only and does not constitute medical advice. Please consult with a qualified healthcare professional for personalized guidance.


Impact on the Community

The discovery of PCB contamination at Poe Hall has sent resonant shockwaves through the NC State community, impacting a wide range of individuals beyond those who directly occupied the building. Let’s explore the far-reaching consequences of this situation:


  • Health Concerns: Students who spent time in Poe Hall, whether in classrooms or attending events, are understandably worried about potential health risks associated with PCB exposure. This anxiety can be particularly heightened for students who may have spent a significant portion of their academic career in the building.
  • Disruption and Uncertainty: The closure of Poe Hall has caused disruptions to academic schedules, displacing classes and potentially affecting student learning. The uncertainty surrounding the future of the building and the ongoing investigations add to the stress faced by students.

Faculty and Staff:

  • Health Risks: Faculty and staff members who worked in Poe Hall are similarly concerned about potential health consequences from long-term exposure to PCBs. This can lead to anxiety and a sense of unease regarding their long-term well-being.
  • Work Disruption: The closure of Poe Hall has disrupted research activities, administrative functions, and daily work routines for faculty and staff who previously occupied the building. Finding alternative workspaces and adapting to new locations can be time-consuming and hinder productivity.

Broader NC State Community:

  • Loss of Trust: The situation has eroded trust in the university’s ability to ensure a safe learning and working environment. There are questions regarding transparency in handling the contamination and potential delays in communication.
  • Reputational Damage: The contamination incident has cast a shadow over NC State’s reputation.

Financial Concerns:

  • Medical Expenses: Individuals who require medical monitoring or treatment due to potential PCB exposure may face unexpected financial burdens.
  • Legal Considerations: Those with health concerns may explore legal options to hold the university accountable for the contamination and associated expenses.

The impact of the Poe Hall contamination extends far beyond the building itself. The entire NC State community is grappling with the health risks, disruptions, and sense of unease caused by this situation. It’s crucial for the university to prioritize transparency, communication, and support services for those affected to rebuild trust and navigate this challenging situation effectively.

How Edwards Kirby’s Poe Hall Attorneys Can Help

At Edwards Kirby, we understand the physical and emotional toll this situation can take. If you spent time in Poe Hall before its closure, we are here to help you navigate the complexities of this issue and protect your rights.

Here’s how our team of Poe Hall contamination attorneys can assist you:

Don’t Hesitate to Take Action:

The health effects of PCB exposure can take years to manifest, but by taking proactive steps now, you can ensure your rights are protected and explore all available legal options to safeguard your future.

Contact Edwards Kirby Today:

If you were present at Poe Hall before its closure, we encourage you to contact Edwards Kirby today for a free consultation. There is no obligation to proceed with legal action, but we believe in empowering you with knowledge and ensuring you have a voice in this situation.

Together, we can fight for justice and a healthier future for the NC State community.


Premises Liability and Poe Hall

The discovery of PCB contamination at Poe Hall raises questions about the legal responsibility of NC State University as the property owner. This situation falls under the realm of premises liability, a legal concept that holds property owners accountable for ensuring a safe environment for visitors.

Understanding Premises Liability:

Premises liability law dictates that property owners have a duty of care to maintain their premises in a reasonably safe condition. This includes:

  • Regularly inspecting the property for potential hazards.
  • Taking necessary steps to repair or warn about identified hazards.
  • Preventing foreseeable dangers that could cause harm to visitors.

NC State’s Potential Liability:

In the context of Poe Hall, the university’s knowledge or lack thereof regarding the PCB contamination is a crucial factor. Here’s a breakdown of potential scenarios:

  • If NC State knew or should have known about the contamination: The university could be held liable for failing to address the hazard and potentially exposing occupants to health risks.
  • If the contamination was unforeseen: The university’s liability may depend on whether they exercised reasonable care in maintaining the building.

Edwards Kirby’s Experience with Premises Liability:

At Edwards Kirby, we have extensive experience handling premises liability cases —- our legal team has a proven track record of holding negligent property owners accountable for injuries and damages caused by unsafe conditions.

Protecting Your Rights:

If you spent time in Poe Hall and are concerned about potential health effects from PCB exposure, it’s crucial to understand your legal options. Premises liability law may provide a path to seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages associated with the contamination.

We’re Here to Help:

Our team of experienced attorneys can analyze the specific circumstances of your situation and advise you on your legal rights under premises liability law. Contact Edwards Kirby today for a free consultation to discuss your options and explore the possibility of holding NC State accountable for the Poe Hall contamination.

Poe Hall Contamination FAQs


What exactly happened at Poe Hall?

NC State’s Poe Hall was closed due to high levels of PCBs, a probable carcinogen. This contamination poses health risks to those who spent time in the building.

How many cancer cases were reported at Poe Hall?

Reports indicate there are potentially 100 cancer cases linked to Poe Hall, but this doesn’t necessarily mean the contamination caused them. The exact number isn’t important for understanding the potential health risks.

How can I know if I've been affected by the contamination at Poe Hall?

While the full picture is still emerging, if you spent significant time at Poe Hall before its closure in November 2023, particularly if you have any health concerns, it’s wise to consult a doctor and discuss potential PCB exposure. Get advice on appropriate monitoring or testing. Additionally, we can help you understand your legal options.

What are the potential health risks associated with the Poe Hall contamination?

The PCB contamination at Poe Hall raises concerns about various cancers, immune system weakening, and developmental problems in those exposed. Long-term health effects are a possibility, making proactive healthcare measures crucial.

What type of compensation can victims of the Poe Hall contamination seek?

Victims of the Poe Hall PCB contamination may seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages associated with PCB exposure, holding the university accountable for its role in creating an unsafe environment.

What should I do if I or someone I know might be affected by the contamination?

If you or someone you know spent time at Poe Hall before its closure, consult a doctor about potential health risks and schedule a free legal consultation with Edwards Kirby to explore your options.

How long do I have to file a legal claim regarding the Poe Hall contamination?

The statute of limitations for premises liability claims in North Carolina is generally three years, but it’s crucial to consult with an attorney as soon as possible to preserve your legal rights.

What is the process for filing a claim related to Poe Hall contamination?

If you spent time in Poe Hall before its closure and have concerns about PCB exposure, contacting Edwards Kirby for a free consultation is the first step. Our experienced attorneys can help you understand your legal options and the claims process.

Are there any recent updates or developments regarding the Poe Hall contamination situation?

As of today, March 28, 2024, Poe Hall remains closed and investigations into the source and extent of contamination are ongoing. The NC State community awaits further updates from the university.

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