“The manufacturers of firefighting foam may feel a little crowded, as all three water authorities impacted by PFAS drinking water contamination in Bucks and Montgomery counties are now suing them over the issue.

The Warminster Municipal Authority, the Horsham Water and Sewer Authority, and Warrington all initiated legal proceedings against half a dozen firefighting foam manufacturers this week. Anapol Weiss, a Philadelphia-based law firm, is representing all three plaintiffs.

Listed as defendants are the 3M Co. of Minnesota, the Buckeye Fire Protection Co. of North Carolina, National Foam Inc. of West Chester, and Chemguard, Ansul, and Tyco Fire Products, all of Wisconsin. Although the three suits are separate, Larry Cohan, lead Anapol Weiss attorney on the cases, said they take a similar tack. Cohan will be joined on the case by his son and fellow Anapol Weiss attorney, Josh Cohan.

‘These local governments have sustained enormous (financial) losses,’ Larry Cohan said. ‘That problem relates directly to these manufacturers, selling a product that they certainly knew long before was potentially hazardous to health’…

Due to the contamination, the water systems were forced to close approximately 18 water wells in 2014 and 2016. The three authorities then implemented ‘zero tolerance’ plans to remove the chemicals in their water system to nondetectable levels. As the military only agreed to pay to filter wells contaminated above a safety limit recommended by the Environmental Protection Agency, the water authorities were on the hook to pay for the plans, which involved buying large quantities of water from the North Wales Water Authority.

Warminster is currently paying about $2.5 million extra a year, while Horsham is paying about $1.2 million, which it passes through to customers as an average surcharge of $73.48. Warrington projects paying about $1.8 million total in 2018 and 2019, said water and sewer director Christian Jones. Cohan said his firm and the water authorities have not yet totaled an exact amount of alleged damages but that it will be ‘many millions’ of dollars.”

Read the full article by Kyle Bagenstose