3M has decided to pay $6 billion to settle 300,000 cases relating to their combat earplugs over the next five years. Use of these earplugs in the military resulted in permanent hearing loss and tinnitus injuries.
3M’s Combat Arms earplugs were used in US Military training and combat from 2003 to 2015 including in Afghanistan and Iraq.
It is widely believed that 3M knowingly hid “design flaws, fudged test results and failed to provide instructions for the proper use of the earplugs.”
Aearo, the company responsible for manufacturing the earplugs for 3M, filed for bankruptcy in July 2022. 3M pledged $1 billion to fund liabilities stemming from earplug lawsuits.
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