For decades, military officials at a U.S. Marine camp in North Carolina had known that something was wrong with the base’s water. But the government only took superficial steps to address the situation at Camp Lejeune.
That inaction led to millions of U.S. Marines, members of the U.S. Navy and their families who drank and bathed in that water to be diagnosed with an assortment of life-threatening medical ailments such as miscarriages, birth defects, childhood cancers and Parkinson’s disease. However, now, a new federal law hopes to remedy the situation, allowing these victims who served their country bring claims for the damages they suffered.
Deadline for taking legal action: Aug. 10, 2024
With President Biden’s signing in August of the Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022, an outpouring of claims awaits from veterans and families who spent more than 30 days at the camp from Aug. 1, 1953, through Dec. 31, 1987, in Jacksonville, North Carolina. Nearly 1 million people likely suffered from exposure to contaminated water during that time.
Although victims have until Aug. 10, 2024, to pursue legal action, they should promptly pursue their claims with the help of an experienced and empathetic attorney.
Environmental investigators determined that Camp Lejeune’s contaminated water included industrial solvents, benzene and many other chemicals. Those contaminants have been attributed to an off-base dry-cleaning business, chemical dumping and leaky storage tanks.
Cancers, scleroderma and miscarriages
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs determined that the exposure to the contaminated water has led some veterans, reservists and National Guard members to become afflicted with:
- Adult leukemia
- Aplastic anemia
- Bladder cancer
- Kidney cancer
- Liver cancer
- Multiple myeloma
- Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Parkinson’s disease
Other ailments that have ties to the contaminated water include cancers of the esophagus, lung and breast, scleroderma, female infertility, miscarriages and neurobehavioral effects.
The government let them down
U.S. veterans understand the risks of serving their country. However, one of those risks should not have been serious medical ailments caused by exposure to toxic and contaminated water. They and their families now suffer from the lingering effects caused by government inaction. It is time for them to seek compensation.