Associated Press Published

Judge Lets Chemical Spill Suit Continue

Elk River

A judge is letting a lawsuit continue against a utility and a chemical producer over a chemical spill that sullied 300,000 people’s tap water.

In Charleston federal court Wednesday, Judge John Copenhaver denied most dismissal motions by Eastman Chemical, West Virginia American Water and its parent company, American Water Works.

The judge tossed or partially dismissed a few counts.

Eastman produced the chemical that leaked from a Freedom Industries tank in January 2014, spurring a tap-water ban for days.

The water company’s supply was contaminated.

Businesses that lost money without clean water and individuals filed the lawsuit. It says Eastman didn’t warn of the chemical’s potential dangers, and the utility didn’t take sufficient precautionary measures.

Freedom is in bankruptcy proceedings. The company and some executives face federal pollution charges.