Lawsuit blames disabilities on pollution in Gloucester, Salem counties
A mother and her adult daughter in South Jersey are suing several companies over decades of water contamination and other pollution involving “forever chemicals,” which they say have caused multiple disabilities and physical illnesses.
Carly Corrar, who is 24, and her mother, Shirley Bond, are seeking to recover damages for injuries suffered over a span of time from before Bond was pregnant with Corrar, through the young woman’s childhood in Salem County, according to a lawsuit filed on Jan. 8, as first reported by the Courier-Post.
The complaint names DuPont, Chemours, Arkema, Solvay Specialty Polymers USA and 3M as defendants, accusing the corporations of knowingly exposing the community to decades’ worth of toxic chemicals through water and soil contamination as well as air pollution.
Their lawsuit focuses on the Solvay and Arkema facility in West Deptford and the DuPont and Chemours' Chambers Works facility in Pennsville and Carneys Point Townships.
Nearly two years ago, the Department of Environmental Protection filed its own lawsuits focused on chemical contamination stemming from four different DuPont/Chemours facilities, including the same Chambers Works site.
The state’s suit specifically outlines contaminations involving PFAS, man-made chemicals manufactured in the United States since the 1940s, which are classified as likely human carcinogens.
Back in November, the state also filed a separate lawsuit against Solvay Specialty Polymers USA and Arkema for widespread drinking water contamination from PFAS stemming from the same Solvay site in West Deptford.
Corrar suffers from a variety of physical and cognitive developmental delays; neurological disorder, digestive conditions including chronic vomiting and gallstones, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, joint issues as well as “profound pain and suffering and mental anguish," according to the civil suit.
The complaint says the corporations acted out of “greed and in callous disregard” for public health,” saying that there had been evidence for decades of the severe effects and impacts of PFAS and other toxins.
"Despite DEP’s urging, for years Solvay has been slow to take responsibility for the PFAS contamination it has spread throughout the region. With respect to serious public health concerns, like impacts to public drinking water, Solvay has been disregarding the damage and risks to the public," a written release from the NJDEP said at the time the lawsuit was announced.
Corrar lived in Pedricktown from her birth in 1996 until about 2018, first with both parents, and then when they separated when their daughter was about three, with Bond.
Corrar also began visiting her father on weekends in Penns Grove, once her parents were separated, according to the suit.
Bond had already been a longtime resident of Pedricktown, at a different residence from about 1962 to 1981, the complaint said.
PFAS have been linked to developmental issues affecting fetuses during pregnancy and infants who breast-feed, while other studies have shown that exposure to the chemicals may cause autoimmune and endocrine disorders in adults, as well as kidney, liver, and testicular cancer, according to prosecutors for the state.