Flint Residents File $220 Million Lawsuit Against EPA

The class action lawsuit is seeking damages to pay for personal injuries.

ByABC News
April 26, 2016, 4:42 PM

— -- Flint, Michigan, residents have filed a $220 million class-action lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, claiming it was negligent in the toxic water crisis that contributed dangerous levels of lead to the city's water supply.

An administrative complaint representing 513 residents was filed Monday claiming property damage consisting of "irreparable impairment" of water service lines, plumbing and hot water tanks and "physical injury caused by ingesting water contaminated with lead, copper and other toxic materials."

The class action lawsuit seeks $15 million for property damage and $205.2 million for "personal injury damage."

Notice was provided to the EPA detailing a "massive environmental violation" by resident Jan Burgess on Oct. 14, 2014, according to the complaint.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality began to distribute water from the Flint "highly corrosive and toxic" river to more than 30,000 Flint residents on April 25 of that year, the complaint said.

"For almost 50 years, Flint water uses enjoyed plentiful clean fresh water purchased from the Detroit Water and Sewage Department," the document read.

Residents were exposed to the water from the Flint River for "539 days or 1 year, 5 months and 21 days," the complaint said.

The lawyer who filed the class action lawsuit, Michael L. Pitt, did not immediately return ABC News' request for comment.

The EPA did not immediately return ABC News' request for comment.

Last week, a federal judge in Detroit dismissed a $150 million class-action lawsuit filed by Flint residents and one Flint business, suggesting the plaintiffs refile in a Michigan state court due to lack of jurisdiction.

The next day, two Michigan Department of Environmental Quality employees plead not guilty after they were charged in connection to the water crisis. It is unclear if a supervisor at the Flint Plant Water has entered a plea to the charges against him. His lawyer, Robert Harrison, did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment.