FIEGER Files $100 Million Suit over Flint Water Crisis
SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Feb. 2, 2016 — Attorney Geoffrey Fieger announced today he has filed a $100 million lawsuit against Governor Rick Snyder and McLaren Flint Hospital on behalf of four Genesee County residents who contracted Legionnaires’ disease while being treated during the Flint water crisis. One of the residents was 58-year-old Debra Kidd, who died from Legionella pneumonia on Aug. 2, 2015, just seven days after she presented to the McLaren Flint ER with a headache.
McLaren, which uses Flint city water, knew its water supply was contaminated with Legionella back in April of 2014, just days after the city started drawing water from the Flint River. State and city officials admitted they failed to treat the river water piped through its distribution system with anti-corrosive chemicals as required by federal law, causing pipes to corrode, lead to leach, and bacteria like Legionella to proliferate, in the water. McLaren has conceded the Legionella came from the city’s corroded and untreated “brown water.”
Over the next 17 months, scores of McLaren patients developed Legionnaires’ disease. Though both Snyder and the hospital were well aware of McLaren’s Legionella problem, nothing was done to stop the outbreak, and neither alerted the public of the deadly disease lurking within the hospital facility. Some patients weren’t even told they contracted the disease. They found out by reviewing their own medical records more than a year later.
“A hospital won’t make money if it discloses a Legionnaires’ outbreak from contaminated water, and a Governor will stop hearing whispers that he’s being considered for higher office if he reveals a water and Legionnaire’s crisis. We know what happened here,” said Geoffrey Fieger. “The more I read and learn about this, the angrier I get. To save a few dollars, the Snyder Administration poisoned an entire city and thought they could get away with it because those poisoned were poor, and primarily black.”
“Complaints about foul smelling, discolored water from concerned residents were ignored. Directives from the federal EPA to treat the water with necessary anti-corrosive agents and to alert the public about the water problems were met with open hostility and defiance. Local physicians’ and out of state experts’ warnings and data showing the water and young children had significant elevated lead levels were discredited and ridiculed,” Fieger continued. “The latest revelation of the conspiracy between the state administration and McLaren to ignore and conceal 87 cases of Legionella disease is the final straw. I can no longer stand on the sidelines and watch this debacle unfold. Another Snyder investigation, which will only provide excuses for his administration’s and McLaren’s role in the Legionnaires’ outbreak, will not be tolerated. The people of Flint need Justice and I plan to get it for them.”
Fieger filed the case in Genesee County Circuit Court.
This press release was issued by Fieger Law. For further information please contact Geoffrey Fieger, 248.355.5555