Beginning in 1952, the General Electric Company (GE) operated a plant in Rome, Georgia at which it manufactured medium-sized transformers for industrial and commercial use. For over 20 years, until approximately 1975, GE used polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) as a fire retardant in those transformers. In the course of its manufacturing activities, GE intentionally channeled PCB-contaminated storm water runoff and other plant effluent into two nearby creeks. In addition, GE intentionally disposed of PCB-contaminated waste on-site in three landfills. PCBs have leached out from those landfills and contaminated groundwater that also has moved off-site.
The PCB-contaminated waters from the creeks and the groundwater have moved off-site and entered the properties of many private landowners in Rome. Along with cooperating counsel in Georgia, Beasley Allen is representing several individual landowners who have sued GE for property damage resulting from the PCB contamination, as well as a resident who seeks to pursue claims on behalf of a class of persons whose property was damaged by contamination flowing from one of the creeks. The use of PCBs was banned by the federal government after 1975. The United States Environmental Protection Agency and other regulatory agencies classify PCBs as probable human carcinogens. PCBs have been linked as well in some studies to numerous other human health effects, including liver damage, immunosuppressive effects, neurological injury, and endocrine system disruption.
What can I do?
Protection of people and their property from large corporate polluters is our top priority. A unique feature of our growing environmental/toxic tort practice is the ability to represent a large number of people harmed either physically or by damage to their property. Environmental litigation poses unique legal challenges because of the complex scientific and technical issues frequently addressed, and because of the overlapping authority of numerous administrative agencies and courts at the local, state, and federal levels.
We have worked hard to gain a nation-wide reputation in environmental litigation, often referred to as “toxic torts.” These are difficult cases, but we are fighting to make a difference.
If you or a loved one is in need of a environmental attorney, contact us today for a free legal consultation.