DuPont, Chemours to Pay $670 Million in C-8 Settlement
DuPont and Chemours have agreed to a $670.7 million settlement to resolve over 3,500 lawsuits. The lawsuits allege that the chemical manufacturer, DuPont, knowingly contaminated drinking water supplies with the chemical C-8 (ammonium perfluorooctanoate), which was used to manufacture Teflon at the company’s Washington Works Plant near Parkersburg, West Virginia. The manufacturing process released significant amounts of C-8 into the surrounding air, water, and landfills. The plaintiffs include residents of West Virginia and Southern Ohio who lived in one of the six contaminated water districts, including Little Hocking, Ohio; Belpre, Ohio; Village of Pomeroy, Ohio; Tuppers Plains, Ohio; Lubeck Public Service District, West Virginia; and Mason County Public Service District, West Virginia.
In October 2012, a panel of scientists reported several probable links between C-8 exposure and certain serious health conditions, including testicular and kidney cancer, thyroid disease, ulcerative colitis, pregnancy-induced hypertension, and high cholesterol. The findings stemmed from a series of studies, which examined over 70,000 area residents. In 2014, lawsuits filed by plaintiffs who sustained such injuries were consolidated in the federal Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) entitled In Re: E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company C-8 Personal Injury Litigation (MDL 2433) in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio before The Honorable Edmund A. Sargus, Jr.
Three trials were completed by the time of the recent settlement. The first trial, which took place in 2015, involved a woman from Southern Ohio who alleged that C-8 caused her to develop kidney cancer, whereby a jury awarded $1.6 million for her injuries. The second trial, which took place in mid-2016, involved a man from Southern Ohio who alleged that C-8 caused him to develop testicular cancer, whereby a jury awarded $5.1 million for his injuries, in addition to $500,000 in punitive damages. The third trial, which took place in late-2016, involved another man from Southern Ohio who alleged that C-8 caused him to develop testicular cancer, whereby a jury awarded $2 million for his injuries, in addition to $10.5 million in punitive damages. At the time the settlement was announced, a fourth trial was ongoing, which involved another man from Southern Ohio who alleged that C-8 caused him to develop testicular cancer.
Schlichter, Bogard & Denton, LLP played an active role in the litigation, with Roger C. Denton being appointed by The Honorable Edmund A. Sargus, Jr. to serve on the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee for the federal C-8 Multidistrict Litigation and Ashley Brittain-Landers providing assistance for the first three trials.
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