New Mexico Injury Lawyer Blog

Articles Posted in Toxic Torts

On August 5, 2015, workers for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) caused the release of 3 million gallons of heavy metal contaminated wastewater while attempting to enter the defunct Gold King Mine in Southern Colorado.  This release of toxic wastewater ultimately flowed into the Animas and San Juan rivers, causing the water to turn orange.  Communities and individuals in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and neighboring areas were affected.  While the EPA has taken full responsibility for this environmental disaster, businesses, families, and individuals are still suffering from losses caused by the toxic spill.

If you lived near the Animas or San Juan rivers and you suffered damages as a result of the Gold King Mine Spill, you may be able to collect compensation for your loss from the EPA.  Property damage, personal injury, or loss of income, related to the spill, may include:

  • Loss of crops
  • Costs from hauling in water
  • Well contamination
  • Loss of cattle/livestock
  • Illness from water ingestion
  • Business loss due to river closure

The full extent of the damage caused by this toxic spill is still unknown, but high concentrations of arsenic, lead, mercury, and other heavy metals were detected in the wastewater.  Individuals and businesses along the Animas and San Juan rivers that rely on either river for their livelihood and/or business may have a case.

Free conferences are planned for the future in both Farmington, New Mexico and Durango, Colorado to discuss potential claims with clients.  Please fill out a contact form or call the Branch Law Firm if you or someone you know has suffered damages as a result of the Gold King Mine Spill.  We have experienced lawyers and knowledgeable support staff that can help you.

Changing his previous stance, Dr. Craig Postlewaite, the U.S. military’s senior health protection official has recently admitted that some “service members might suffer long-term medical problems as a direct result of exposure to smoke and fumes from open-air pits scattered throughout Iraq and Afghanistan.”

Further, after repeated denial by the U.S Military of any ill effects of burn pit exposure, now comes word that the Department of Defense has finally agreed to study burn pit exposure impact.

“Burn pits” are open-air pits which burn everything from shoes to tires to body parts, exposing anyone nearby to harmful toxins including arsenic, formaldehyde and hydrogen cyanide.

Inhaling burn pit smoke has been linked to acute health effects including rare blood disorders, cancer, eye irritation, pulmonary and respiratory ailments. The DOD study comes on the heels of several lawsuits attacking Halliburton and KBR for their use of these pits. In fact, 32 lawsuits in 32 states have been filed across the country alleging injuries to our service people and military contractors as a direct result of exposure to burn pit emissions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

President Obama has vowed that the burn pits will not become another Agent Orange.
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