By now, it is a known fact that the drinking water at Camp Lejeune was contaminated with volatile organic compounds between 1953 and 1987. Still, you may wonder how these highly toxic chemicals ended up in the water sources at the military base.
There were multiple sources of water contamination at Camp Lejeune, the most noteworthy being a nearby dry-cleaning firm, ABC One-Hour Cleaners, that improperly disposed of industrial solvents such as perchloroethylene.
Perchloroethylene would be buried outside the middle building, which made it easy for it to infiltrate the drinking water supplies at the military base. The dry-cleaning establishment, consisting of three buildings joined to form one complex, was located on the southern portion of the property. Today, the site where ABC One-Hour Cleaners existed is a Superfund site, and cleanup activities were carried out there by the EPA.
In addition to contaminating the water at Camp Lejeune with perchloroethylene, the dry-cleaning firm also released the following chemicals into the groundwater and soil:
Other sources of water contamination at Camp Lejeune were industrial area spills, water disposal sites, and leaking underground water storage tanks. Benzene was also present in the drinking water at the military base. It most likely made its way into the water sources due to 800,000 gallons of fuel that leaked from Camp Lejeune's fuel farm during the last century.
While the military base had eight water supplies, only two were contaminated, but this was enough to endanger the health of one million people who drank the water. Specifically, Hadnot Point and Tarawa Terrace were the water supplies with toxic water. At the former, the trichloroethylene level exceeded the safe limit by 280 times, whereas at the latter, the perchloroethylene level eclipsed it by 43 times.
Another important source of water contamination at the military base was service members themselves, who had to use solvents such as trichloroethylene to clean up weapons, machinery, and equipment. These chemicals were also inadequately disposed of and thereby ended up in the drinking water supplies at Camp Lejeune.
With over 35 years of experience in assessing toxic exposure and personal injury claims, our expert team is ready to offer you quality assistance if you are a Camp Lejeune toxic water victim struggling with a disease. The only documents we will ask for to evaluate your case are your military records and your medical records. If we determine that you are entitled to financial compensation, we will put you in touch with a reputable, specialized attorney.