Federal lawsuit: military failed to maintain water system, did not alert residents to toxic contamination
HONOLULU, Hawaii – Acclaimed trial lawyer Mark Lanier and the Lanier Law Firm have joined forces with legal teams seeking answers and demanding justice for as many as 93,000 Honolulu-area residents whose drinking water has been contaminated by jet fuel spills from the U.S. Navy’s Red Hill fuel storage facility.
The Lanier Law Firm joins Just Well Law firm and the Hosoda Law Group in high-profile litigation following two large fuel spills of JP-5 jet fuel in 2021 that released toxic chemicals into the water supply supplying Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH), Aliamanu Military Reservation (AMR), Red Hill Housing and surrounding areas.
“This was a systemic failure to protect citizens at the most basic level,” said Mr. Lanier, who has garnered nearly $20 billion in verdicts and settlements in his career. “Every step of the way, the practices at the Red Hill facility represent a shocking dereliction of duty to protect soldiers, their families and everyone who relies on the public water system.”
A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency investigation found that the Navy and Army failed to adequately operate and maintain the public water systems serving JBPHH and AMR. In addition, military authorities failed to warn residents about the release of the toxic chemicals for several days and only issued an alert after receiving numerous complaints about petroleum odors in the tap water. The investigation resulted in citations for inadequate maintenance, emergency response protocols and safety operations at the two bases.
Residents who consumed the tap water have reported medical problems including seizures, gastrointestinal disorders, neurological issues, burns, rashes, lesions, thyroid abnormalities, migraines, neurobehavioral challenges, and other complications.
“These residents and the public need answers, not just about how and why this happened but also about the health risks they face going forward,” said Alex Brown, managing attorney of the Lanier Law Firm’s Commercial Litigation group.
The lawsuit is Patrick Feindt, Jr., et al., v. The United States of America, Case No. 1:22-cv-0039, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Hawaii. In addition to four named plaintiffs, the firms represent hundreds who have filed pre-litigation SF-95 claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act.
About the Lanier Law Firm
For more than 30 years, the men and women at The Lanier Law Firm have worked tirelessly, throughout the United States, to find unique and effective solutions for their clients. More than 60 skilled attorneys practice law in a broad array of areas, including business litigation, pharmaceutical litigation, asbestos exposure, oil and gas litigation, personal injury as well as defective and dangerous products, among others. Named an Elite Trial Law Firm by The National Law Journal, The Lanier Law Firm has offices in Houston, New York and Los Angeles. To learn more visit http://www.lanierlawfirm.com.