West Virginia Chemical Spill Taints Water Supply; Cory Watson Crowder and DeGaris Represents People and Businesses Affected by Chemical Leak

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West Virginia residents turn to the courts after a chemical spill taints the water supply.

A chemical spill in West Virginia has threatened the safety of the water supply in nine counties according to a news release issued January 9, 2014 by West Virginia Governor Early Ray Tomblin. Authorities report that a Freedom Industries plant in Charleston, West Virginia released 4-methylcyclohexane methanol into the Elk River, contaminating the water supply to much of the city and neighboring counties. The report from the Governor's office indicated the chemical release came from a plant upstream from the water treatment facility that services the Kanawha Valley Water System.

Class Action lawsuits filed January 10, 2014 in Kanawhat County, West Virginia Circuit Court by attorneys with Cory Watson Crowder & DeGaris and attorney Kathy Brown name Freedom Industries as the defendant. (Civil action # 14-c-60 and 14-c-61)

Both the federal government and West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin declared a state of emergency over concerns that the water is unsafe. The American Association of Poison Control Centers issued a safety alert warning of the hazardous chemical leak into the water supply. According to the American Association of Poison Control, symptoms of exposure to 4-methylcyclohexane methanol included headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, rashes and itching.

The Governor's statement advised residents in Boone, Cabell, Clay, Jackson, Kanawha, Lincoln, Logan, Putnam and Roane counties to not use the water to drink, cook with, or bathe in. It is unclear when the water will again be safe; the water use ban has been extended indefinitely

4-methylcyclohexane methanol is used to prepare coal, and is considered a foaming agent. It is unclear how the spill occurred, but the release of chemicals did overrun a containment area designed to prevent spills from reaching the environment.

Cory Watson Crowder & DeGaris is a Birmingham, Alabama personal injury law firm recognized nationally for its practice areas of class actions, environmental litigation, pharmaceutical drug litigation, defective medical device litigation, products liability litigation and business and securities litigation. Additional information is available at http://www.cwcd.com.

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Melanie McCraney
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