Report: Major $600 million settlement coming in Flint water crisis lawsuits

Published: Aug. 19, 2020 at 6:50 PM EDT
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FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - A major announcement could be coming of a $600 million settlement in the ongoing Flint water crisis civil lawsuits.

WXYZ in Detroit is reporting that the formal announcement of the settlement is possible on Friday. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel are expected to announce details of the deal.

The settlement would pay off claims from residents over lead poisoning and a Legionnaires’ disease outbreak that took place during the Flint water emergency. Dozens of lawsuits have been pending in federal and state courts for years alleging wrongdoing, which led to the water crisis.

WXYZ says Friday’s announcement will include a formula for how the money will be disbursed to plaintiffs in the various lawsuits.

The Flint water crisis was caused when the city’s drinking water source was switched from Detroit’s municipal system to the Flint River. The river water was more corrosive and it wasn’t pretreated properly, which allowed it to eat away the protective lining inside lead and galvanized pipes.

That allowed particles of lead and other metals to break off the pipes, enter people’s drinking water and poison them.

Flint since has switched back to the Great Lakes Water Authority in Detroit for drinking water and signed a long-term contract.

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