PETERSBURGH, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Town of Petersburgh has filed a lawsuit against several companies they allege are responsible for bring PFOA-containing materials into the community. The suit comes as the community continues to see PFOA contamination in its water supply.
The suit was filed earlier this week in State Supreme Court in Rensselaer County against numerous companies. 3M, AGC Chemicals, Daikin America, Dupont, Solvay Solexis and Shamrock Technologies are all defendants in the case.
The 40-page lawsuit alleges these companies played a roll in bring PFOA-containing materials into the community, through the Taconic Plastics plant, which the DEC says is responsible for the town’s contamination.
“Defendants designed, manufactured, marketed, distributed, supplied, and/or sold PTFE products containing PFOA to the sole industrial manufacturer located in Petersburgh, NY,” part of the lawsuit reads.
According to the DEC, the plant, which is a state designated Superfund site, has been used to manufacture PTFE-coated fabrics since the 1960s. In the past, these materials used PFOA “as a processing agent”.
The DEC’s report on the plant says Taconic moved away from PFOA-containing PTFE in 2013, but the damage to the community’s water supply had already been done.
Testing since 2016 has continued to show the presence of PFOA in the town’s water. According to the new lawsuit, recent test results show levels as high as 100 parts per trillion, which is 250,000 times higher than what’s considered safe for human consumption.
The town alleges these issues are a direct result of these companies bringing PFOA to Taconic.
“On information and belief, the PFOA contamination of the drinking water supplies across Petersburgh, NY is a direct and proximate result of the release of PFOA contained in PTFE products manufactured, designed, sold, and/or supplied by Defendants to the sole industrial manufacturer located in Petersburgh, NY.” part of the suit said.
The lawsuit also claims the defendants knew, or should have known, that the harmful chemicals would make its way into the groundwater, therefore polluting the water supply.
This lawsuit is separate from the one that was filed against Taconic in the past.
That suit was settled last year, with the company agreeing to pay nearly $23.5 million in damages. Money from that case includes payments to impacted residents, as well as a 15-year medical study to try and determine the impacts PFOA contamination has on people’s health.
Requests for comment from the Town of Petersburgh Supervisor about the new lawsuit were not immediately returned.