Groundwater is the water beneath the earth’s surface that fills the spaces and flows between soil particles and rock. Groundwater is one of our most precious natural resources. Over half of Americans depend on groundwater for their drinking water either through public wells or private wells. In rural areas, close to 100 percent of Americans use groundwater as their drinking source. Groundwater also plays an important role in recharging our lakes, rivers, streams and wetlands. Contamination of groundwater occurs when leaks, spills and releases occur and move downward through the soils into the groundwater supplies below. Primary sources of groundwater contamination include leaking underground storage tanks, landfills, hazardous waste sites, pesticides and septic systems.
Groundwater contamination can result in a variety of adverse consequences. It can render drinking water sources unsafe, thereby forcing people and sometimes entire communities to find alternative sources, often at extensive cost. Exposure to contaminants can cause acute health impacts such as nausea, diarrhea and headaches or cause chronic illnesses such as cancer, liver damage, kidney damage and neurological disorders. Absent direct exposure, groundwater contamination may still pose an explosive hazard and significantly diminish the value and marketability of real property.
The legal staff at Carney Bates & Pulliam has extensive experience representing individuals, small businesses and communities whose groundwater has been contaminated. If you, a loved one, or your property has been harmed by groundwater pollution, contact Carney Bates & Pulliam for a free consultation.