Many years ago, massive amounts of the toxic chemical C8 contaminated the drinking water in parts of West Virginia. You may be at risk of health complications if you drank contaminated water for at least one year prior to December 3, 2004, such as high cholesterol, kidney cancer, testicular cancer, thyroid disease, inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis), or high blood pressure during pregnancy (preeclampsia).
What’s the problem?
The chemical company DuPont manufactures many consumer products at the Washington Works facility, located in Parkersburg, West Virginia. Since the 1950s, this facility has created Teflon, non-stick cooking surfaces, water- and stain-resistant clothing, and other products. C8 (perfluorooctanoate acid or PFOA) is a processing agent used during the manufacturing process. Unfortunately, large amounts of C8 were released into the air, groundwater, and dumped in landfills in Ohio. This caused contamination of drinking water in six water districts in Ohio and West Virginia.
West Virginia C8 Water Contamination
If you live in the following water districts in West Virginia, you may have been exposed to C8 in the drinking water:
- Lubeck Public Service District, West Virginia
- Mason County Public Service District, West Virginia
After a class action lawsuit settlement in 2005, DuPont installed water treatment facilities. C8 is nearly undetectable in these water districts.
However, if you resided in these districts and drank the water for at least one year prior to December 3, 2004, you may have a higher risk of certain health complications. If you develop a side effect listed below, contact a lawyer immediately for more information. It does not matter where you currently reside. If you were injured, you may be entitled to compensation by filing a West Virginia C8 lawsuit.
C8 Side Effects
After DuPont settled a class action lawsuit with residents of West Virginia and Ohio, they agreed to create a panel of scientists to investigate links between C8 exposure and health complications. The scientists found “probable links” between C8 and the following side effects:
- High cholesterol
- Inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis)
- Kidney cancer
- Testicular cancer
- Thyroid disease
- High blood pressure during pregnancy (preeclampsia)
West Virginia C8 Lawsuits
After experts discovered C8 contamination in the groundwater, more than 70,000 residents of six water districts in West Virginia and Ohio filed a class action lawsuit against DuPont. In 2005, DuPont settled the lawsuit with the community, and agreed to pay up to $235 million to fund a health monitoring program for residents who may be at risk of serious health complications.
The class action lawsuit against DuPont has concluded, but personal injury lawsuits are just beginning to be filed. In October 2012, the first three personal injury lawsuits were filed by three West Virginians. The lawsuits include two injury claims and one wrongful death claim. The number of lawsuits will likely continue growing as more people seek justice and compensation for their injuries.