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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Sodium Dichromate Exposure - Court Rules Lawsuit by Former National Guard Proceeds

Former soldiers from the Indiana National Guard, the West Virginia National Guard and the British Air Force will be permitted to proceed with their claim against KBR, Inc. and Halliburton Co. for injuries and they allege arose out of their exposure to sodium dichromate while working at the Quarmat Ali water treatment plant in Iraq.

Judge Vanessa D. Gilmore, US District Court Judge, ruled that, "The sodium dichromate at Quarmat Ali was toxic, present in the environment, and used to treat water for oil well operations.  It was thus an environmental and industrial hazard."

The soldiers, in 2003, provided military protection to civilian teams who were working to restore operations as part of the Project Restore Iraqi Oil (RIO) on behalf of the United States. The soldiers in a  complaint filed in 2010 allege that they were exposed to sodium dichromate which, when mixed with water, acts as an anti-corrosive agent. The chemical is known to be an irritant and a carcinogen.

The court rejected KBR's request that the case be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. the Court ruled that it did have jurisdiction over the matter since a "political question" was not raised and the activities alleged did not fall under the combatant activities exceptions in the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA).  The Court declared in its Order, "... that KBR's actions may thus be evaluated under traditional tort standards."

Sgt. Mark McManaway, et al., v. KBR, INC., et al, Civil Action H-10-1044 (So.D. TX 2012) Decided August 16, 2012.

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More articles about exposures in Iraq and Afghanistan

Aug 11, 2012
The Social Security Administration has added to its list of compassionate allowances a pulmonary condition that has been identified as arising out of exposures to burn pits fumes and dusts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Jan 31, 2010
Burn Pit Litigation Expanding to Over 43 Lawsuits. It has been reported that lawsuits, on the behalf of injured US troops and civilian contractors, who were exposed at US bases to burn pit fumes, have multiplied. There are now...
Feb 20, 2010
Veterans are beginning to speak openly about the toxic exposures they were subjected to at the burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan and the serious health problems that they now are experiencing. Organized groups of disabled ...
Sep 09, 2010
Federal Court Allows Burn Pit Claims to Proceed Against Halliburton & KBR. A Federal Court Judge has ordered that claims against military contractors, KBR (Kellogg Brown and Root) and Halliburton, may proceed.