Where did the toxic chemicals in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune come from?

The dry-cleaning firm ABC One-Hour Cleaners was responsible for contaminating the drinking water at Camp Lejeune with perchloroethylene by improperly disposing of the solvent. However, the military also contributed to water contamination by inadequately disposing of products containing trichloroethylene and benzene that would be used for cleaning weapons and equipment.

answered by Gary Anderson

In 1982, the Marine Corps found volatile organic compounds in the water at Camp Lejeune

The contamination of Camp Lejeune with toxic chemicals began occurring in 1953, but it was only in 1982 that the Marine Corps identified volatile organic compounds (VOCs) lurking in the drinking water of the military base. Subsequently, it was found that the source of perchloroethylene (PCE) contamination was the improper waste disposal practices of ABC One-Hour Cleaners, a dry-cleaning firm situated off-base. As for trichloroethylene (TCE) and benzene, these hazardous chemicals ended up polluting the drinking water at Camp Lejeune due to years of inadequate use and disposal of various chemicals employed for cleaning weapons and equipment.

In the spring of 1982, the highest TCE level at the water-distribution plant Hadnot Point was 1,400 ppb when the safe limit is just 5 ppb. Subsequently, in the winter of 1985, the maximum level of PCE at the water-distribution plant Tarawa Terrace was 215 ppb when the safe limit is also 5 ppb. PFAS, a group of dangerous fluorinated chemicals, were also present in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune. The source of PFAS was the use of AFFF, a fire suppressant often employed by military firefighters and trainees to extinguish jet fuel and petroleum fires. AFFF contains between 50% and 98% PFAS. While the safe limit of PFAS is 70 ppt, the maximum level of these chemicals at Camp Lejeune was 172,000 ppt.

Therefore, the toxic chemicals in the drinking water at Camp Lejeune came from the improper disposal practices of the dry-cleaning firm ABC One-Hour Cleaners and the inadequate use of solvents by service members to clean their weapons and equipment. Military firefighters also contaminated the water at the installation with PFAS by using the dangerous firefighting foam AFFF.

Our attorneys will provide you with assistance if you are a Camp Lejeune toxic exposure victim

With over two decades of experience in assisting victims of toxic exposure, our attorneys are ready to help you recover financial compensation if you spent at least 30 consecutive days at Camp Lejeune between 1953 and 1987. To file a Camp Lejeune toxic water claim or lawsuit, you only have to retrieve your military records if you are a veteran and your medical records and send these documents to our legal team. After we carefully evaluate your case, we will determine whether you qualify for compensation and VA benefits.

Alternatively, if you are a family member, you will need to provide us with your medical records and evidence of your stay at Camp Lejeune. If you are eligible to file a claim, our resourceful attorneys will promptly begin preparing it for submission. After you explain your situation and provide us with the required information and documents, your involvement in the legal process will be minimal, as we understand that toxic exposure victims are usually in a lot of physical and emotional pain. In the end, you may receive the compensation you deserve.

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