Businesses in West Virginia are seeking justice for the harm suffered in the Freedom Industries chemical spill that contaminated water across a nine county region. Many businesses in and around Charleston, West Virginia were closed for days and lost revenue due to the toxic chemical spill that threatened the water safety of up to 300,000 people. Cory Watson Attorneys represented clients whose businesses suffered economic damages or were otherwise harmed by the chemical spill, and along with West Virginia attorney Kathy Brown, they filed a class action lawsuit to seek compensation for the loss of business by area residents.
The class action on behalf of businesses, Civil Action No. 14-C-61, filed in Circuit Court of Kanawha County, West Virginia, alleges that companies suffered loss of business as a result of not being able to “(1) use water to serve their patrons, (2) use water to wash and sanitize their facilities, or (3) allow their patrons and staff to use and sanitize their restrooms, wash their hands etc.” Cory Watson Attorneys attorneys and Brown also filed a separate class action, Civil Action No. 14-C-60, in Circuit Court of Kanawha County, on behalf of individuals who suffered injuries and losses as a result of the chemical spill.
If you or your loved one suffered from contaminated water because of the West Virginia Freedom Industries chemical spill, Cory Watson Attorneys wants to help. Give us a call at (877) 562-0000 or fill out our free consultation form online.
State of Emergency Declared
Authorities confirmed that Freedom Industries released a chemical compound containing 4-methylcyclohexane methanol into the Elk River from their plant in Charleston, West Virginia on January 9, 2014, shutting down much of the city and neighboring counties. The release was upstream from a water treatment facility that services the Kanawha Valley Water System.
Both the federal government and West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin declared a state of emergency over concerns that the water is unsafe. According to a Freedom Industries spokesperson, 4-methylcyclohexane methanol could be harmful if swallowed and can cause irritation of the skin and eyes. The American Association of Poison Control Centers stated that the symptoms of exposure to 4-methylcyclohexane methanol include headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, rashes and itching.
More than 300,000 residents in Boone, Cabell, Clay, Jackson, Kanawha, Lincoln, Logan, Putnam and Roane counties were told to not use the water after the spill from a 48,000 gallon tank. The government advised against using the water to drink, cook with or bathe in, and many businesses that relied on water from the West Virginia American Water Company were shut down because of the spill.
4-methylcyclohexane methanol is used to prepare coal, and is considered a foaming agent. It is unclear how the spill occurred, but officials say the release of chemicals did overrun a containment area designed to prevent spills from reaching the environment.
Freedom Industries’ chemical spill was one mile upriver from where West Virginia American Water plant intakes water for Kanawha Valley residents. Amounts of how much leaked out of the tank could be substantial, as it was hours before the public was alerted, leaving plenty of time for unsuspecting residents to use the contaminated water.
Cory Watson Wants to Help
The law office of Cory Watson Attorneys is ready to protect your rights and fight on behalf of you and your Kanahwa Valley neighbors. Pick up the phone and call us at (877) 526-0000, or fill out our free initial consultation form and get the justice you deserve.