A South Carolina federal judged recently denied 3M’s bid for a government immunity defense in litigation over claims that 3M-produced firefighting foam that contaminated groundwater. 3M argued that, as government contractors, they should be immune from liability. However, U.S. District Judge Richard M. Gergel disagreed, saying 3M knowingly withheld information about the risks of PFAS, or “forever chemicals,” for decades.
The judge pointed out that 3M had better research/information about the long-term effects of PFAS/PFOS than the government did: “It is true that over the years the government came to learn that PFOS was not biodegradable and accumulated in human blood and tissue,” he said. “What the government did not know and has struggled to determine is what effect the presence of PFOS in the blood of the general population, and widely dispersed in the soil and waterways, has on human health and the environment.”
Skinner Law Firm is representing many of the people injured by the contaminated water in the Martinsburg area because of the firefighting foam used at Martinsburg Regional Airport. If you or a loved one have been affected by this community issue, please contact our firm and we’ll do our best to see what can be done about your case.