WASHINGTON (CN) – A class action claims the District of Columbia Water and Sewage Authority concealed the high levels of lead in the city’s drinking water for 7½ years to duck liability. By doing so the city exposed thousands of children and pregnant mothers to lead poisoning and irreversible health problems, according to the Superior Court complaint.
The class claims that DC Water took “Herculean” efforts to shield itself from liability by hiding elevated lead levels in 2001 and omitting language from mandated public education campaigns that would have alerted the public to the growing danger in its drinking water.
The city downplayed the elevated levels of lead in children, refusing to lay the blame on the water, according to the complaint.
Lead plaintiff John Parkhurst says that both of his young sons show signs of lead poisoning after drinking the city’s water for two years.
The class seeks $200 million for fraud and negligence, and is represented by David Sanford with Sanford Wittels.