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What Caused the Water at Camp Lejeune to Become Contaminated?

What Caused the Water at Camp Lejeune to Become Contaminated

For over three decades, the water at Camp Lejeune — a Marine Corps base located in Jacksonville, North Carolina — was reportedly toxic. With over a million people possibly affected, it is impossible to imagine how many victims there have been over the years. Unfortunately, many have passed away without knowing that their symptoms could be attributed to their time at Camp Lejeune. So, what exactly caused the water at Camp Lejeune to become contaminated? Read on to learn more.

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What Chemicals Were In the Water at Camp Lejeune?

Some of the Chemicals Found in Camp Lejeune Water are:

  • Tetrachloroethylene (PCE)
  • Benzene
  • Trichloroethylene

How Did These Chemicals Make Their Way into the Water System?

One of the most prominent culprits was the nearby dry-cleaning facility. Since the dry cleaners did not dispose of their chemical waste properly, those chemicals traveled straight into the water supply. Eventually, the chemical tetrachloroethylene (PCE) spread everywhere, making its way into the groundwater and soil.

How Did Trichloroethylene (TCE) Also Contaminate the Water Supply?

TCE, which is used to wash parts from the manufacturing process, is believed to have infiltrated the water system at Camp Lejeune through spills and tanks leaking underground. Regarding TCE, experts could determine that it entered the water system in more than one way.

When Did Authorities Become Aware of a Problem with Camp Lejeune Water?

It wasn't until the 1980s that authorities started testing the water in earnest — and discovering some shocking results. Just one example was the TCE levels. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) posited that an acceptable amount of TCE would be around five parts for a billion; when tested, the levels at Camp Lejeune were almost five times that. PCE levels, meanwhile, were around four times the allowable amount. This would be bad enough, but it didn't stop there. Authorities also found benzene in addition to a shocking 70 other toxins. Anytime people on the base bathed or drank some water, they unknowingly put themselves at risk. The environmental officials responsible for discovering these chemicals did not shut down the wells until five years after they first noticed the problem. So, of course, thousands of service members and their family members were exposed in the intervening years.

What Health Issues Are Linked to The Water Contamination?

There are many health issues associated with the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune. Just some of them are:

  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Bladder Cancer
  • Liver Cancer
  • Aplastic Anemia
  • Parkinson's Disease
  • Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma
  • Adult Leukemia
  • Breast Cancer
  • Cervical Cancer
  • Esophageal Cancer
  • Scleroderma
  • Renal Toxicity
  • Hepatic Steatosis
  • Infertility
  • Lung Cancer

Justice for Those Who Served at Camp Lejeune August 1, 1953, to December 31, 1987.

With all the complicating factors, lawmakers have pushed for standard statutes of limitation to be lifted. After all, it was years before any news of the toxic water became public. In the meantime, victims were left to deal with the fallout of the tainted water all by themselves.

However, a new law has been signed into action that will allow victims to file lawsuits. Those who believe the water may have impacted them at Camp Lejeune are encouraged to take legal action as soon as possible. File your Camp Lejeune water contamination lawsuit by contacting Mezrano Law Firm.

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