LUBBOCK, Texas — A New York law firm, Napoli Shkolnik PLLC, filed a class-action lawsuit on behalf of private water well owners in Lubbock for contamination of the groundwater.
Napoli Shkolnik said the class action complaint was filed against certain manufacturers. A statement from the law firm said storage and disposal of certain materials at the former Reese Air Force Base exposed residents to toxic material.
Residents suffered cancer and other ailments, according to the statement.
“They knew for decades that these chemicals were bio-cumulative, persist in the environment, and would accumulate in people’s blood,” said Patrick Lanciotti, an Napoli Shkolnik associate.
The statement also said, “Property values in the area have dropped as a result of the contamination.”
The statement listed aqueous firefighting foams (“AFFF”) containing perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (“PFOS”) and perfluorooctanoic acid (“PFOA”). The lawsuit was filed against manufacturers of fluorosurfactants containing PFOS and PFOA.
“The cost should be paid for by the chemical companies because those are the ones who truly did the wrong we’re talking about,” said Lanciotti.
Reese AFB closed in the 1990’s and the property is now known as Reese Technology Center. The US Air Force acknowledged contamination at Reese and other bases nationwide from PFAS, or Polyfluoroalkyl compounds. PFAS was used to extinguish aircraft fires, and it was also used to train firefighters to respond to aircraft fires.