Written By: Robert King, Esq.
Legal Review By: Mike Stag, Esq.
The Eielson AFB Water Contamination Lawsuit is an active lawsuit
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Eielson Air Force Base Water Contamination Lawsuit Overview

Eielson Air Force Base, originally known as Mile 26 Airfield, was constructed to support Fort Wainwright. In 1946, the field’s role grew substantially as it took on runways, hangars, housing, and many other facilities. It was designated Eielson Air Force Base during the Cold War and continued to expand and house many different units. While the base’s population has fluctuated over time it remains open to support military efforts as needed. 

Eielson AFB is located 26 miles southeast of Fairbanks, Alaska, and around 100 miles south of the Arctic Circle. It has around 2,981 active military personnel, 2,628 family members, 1,682 civilians, 77 tenant units, and 2,391 retired personnel. Unfortunately, many of those who have lived at the base were also subject to water contamination. Military activity at the base, including the use of firefighting foam, led to contamination that impacted drinking water supplies. After consuming toxic water, victims are now developing serious health illnesses and seeking compensation through water contamination lawsuits.

Eielson Air Force Base Water Contamination Lawsuit Updates

June 2024 – King Law Reviewing Eielson AFB PFAS Water Contamination Claims

King Law is now reviewing claims for individuals who have been impacted by contaminated drinking water at military bases like Eielson Air Force Base. If you were exposed to toxic PFAS water and developed a related illness, you may be entitled to financial compensation. The first step to pursuing an award is reaching out to schedule a free consultation. We will review your case, confirm your eligibility, and help you understand the claim filing process. 

April 2015 – Drinking Water PFAS Contamination Triggers Health Concerns at Eielson AFB

Drinking water contamination at military bases across the United States has been a concern, particularly over the past decade. The number of bases with confirmed PFAS contamination continues to grow and Eielson was added to that list in 2015 when drinking water samples tested above general health advisory levels. For many, this confirmed long-standing concerns that they were impacted by toxic exposure during their time at Eielson.

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History of Toxic Exposure at Eielson Air Force Base

Eielson AFB has a long history with several different contaminants including per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), arsenic, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), all of which pose serious health risks. 

Furthermore, there are certain levels of these toxins that government organizations have deemed unsafe. For example, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) set a 70 ppt lifetime health advisory (LHA) for PFAS, which was recently lowered to just 4 ppt for two types of PFAS including PFOA and PFOS. 

February 2019-December 2021 – Eielson AFB Struggles With PFAS Contamination Impacting Drinking Water and Food Supplies

Despite knowing about PFAS contamination at and around the base, the Air Force struggled to remedy the situation in a timely manner. Extensive contamination impacted drinking water wells and fish in impacted waterways. While some samples of groundwater, soil, sediment, and surface water fell below cleanup levels at the time, PFAS builds up in the body over time and these levels have since been lowered substantially. 

November 2022 – PFAS Cleanup Efforts Continue at Eielson

In November 2022, the Army Corps of Engineers contracted a company to begin PFAS contamination cleanup, which involved 130,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil. While officials hope the project will be completed by 2027, there are concerns about how it won’t address all contamination and what disposal of PFAS will look like. 

August 2017-October 2018 – PFAS Investigations Occur at and Around Eielson Air Force Base 

Throughout 2017 and 2018, testing continued at Eielson AFB and in surrounding areas to understand levels of PFAS in soil and groundwater. A total of 15 sites at the base were identified for further inspection because of PFAS firefighting foam use, disposal, and spills. This includes hangars, fire training areas, and fire stations. 

April 2015-September 2015 – Further Sampling Shows Widespread Contamination From Eielson AFB 

The Air Force began to broaden their sampling area, looking at residential drinking water for Moose Creek, Alaska. Around 90% of the wells had PFAS levels that exceeded the EPA’s health advisory and residents were given bottled water. Additional sampling found that 133 of 152 wells had exceedances, and granular activated carbon (GAC) filtration systems were installed at affected homes. 

November 2012-March 2015 – Eielson AFB Discovers Extensive PFAS Contamination In Drinking Water Wells

In 2012, the DEC requested PFAS sampling at Eielson fire training areas, which was conducted in July 2014. By January, the Air Force identified widespread contamination with levels as high as 2,000 ppt in groundwater. This triggered the sampling of drinking water supply wells, several of which had PFAS exceedances and had to be deactivated. 

June 2006 – ATSDR Shares Details of PCB and VOC Contamination at Eielson AFB

In June 2006, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) shared details of potential exposure to PCBs, arsenic, and VOCs from Eielson Air Force Base: 

  • Those who consumed fish from the on-base portion of Garrison Slough could have been exposed to dangerous levels of PCBs. 
  • On-base drinking water wells no longer in use could have exposed residents to VOCs and arsenic. 
  • Nearby communities could have consumed VOC-contaminated drinking water because of base activity. 
  • VOC-contaminated water could have led to unsafe levels of vapor intrusion in indoor buildings.

Eielson Air Force Base Water Contamination Map

Our Eielson Air Force Base water contamination map shows key areas where firefighting foam was used. The PFAS plume detected in 2015 is also depicted. This plume represents the movement of PFAS through the environment. The plume has had the largest impact on the Moose Creek community, located at the northwestern boundary of the Air Force base. Toxic contamination is even more widespread than first assumed as the Air Force conducted additional testing outside of the plume. 

Contaminants Found in Eielson Air Force Base Drinking Water

The EPA has identified multiple contaminants of concern in Eielson Air Force Base drinking water, including PFAS, arsenic, benzene, and gasoline. According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG) Tap Water Database, multiple toxins exceeded EWH Health Guidelines, including: 

  • Bromodichloromethane: 29x EWG Health Guideline
  • Chloroform: 76x EWG Health Guideline 
  • Dichloroacetic acid: 30x EWG Health Guideline
  • Haloacetic acids: 159x EWG Health Guideline 
  • Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS): 763x EWG Health Guideline 
  • Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA): 857x EWG Health Guideline
  • Total trihalomethanes: 213x EWG Health Guideline 
  • Trichloroacetic acid: 100x EWG Health Guideline

Per- and Poly-Fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)

Per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of manmade chemicals found in firefighting foam frequently used by military bases to control and put out fires during fire training exercises and other events. Exposure to PFAS, especially in high amounts, is linked to:

  • Birth defects
  • Bladder cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Changes in liver enzymes 
  • Decreased vaccine effectiveness
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Leukemia
  • Lowered immune response 
  • Multiple-myeloma
  • Kidney cancer 
  • Pancreatic cancer 
  • Prostate cancer 
  • Reproductive issues
  • Testicular cancer 
  • Thyroid cancer 
  • Thyroid disease 
  • Ulcerative colitis

At Eielson AFB, multiple types of PFAS have been identified in drinking water at levels far above what is considered safe by health officials like the EWG and EPA. 

Other Contaminants 

In addition to PFAS, there are other contaminants in Eielson AFB water linked to serious health effects: 

  • Arsenic: Damage to eyes, skin, liver, kidneys, lungs, and lymphatic system, and cancer
  • Benzene: Skin, eye, and throat irritation, anemia, lowered immune response, low blood platelet count, and leukemia. 
  • Chloroform: Damage to eyes, skin, liver, kidneys, and nervous system, and cancer 

Keep in mind: Longer-term exposure and higher amounts of exposure can increase these health risks.

Current Water Quality at Eielson Air Force Base

The 2023 Drinking Water Quality Annual Consumer Report for Eielson Air Force Base lists no violations, indicating that the water is safe to drink. While some toxins were found, they were all below enforceable limits. At the time of the report, there was no enforceable PFAS limit. Despite today’s water quality, thousands have already been exposed to PFAS which is known to build up in the body over time. 

Water Treatment Efforts at the Base

Many water treatment efforts at Eielson AFB have focused on sampling water and addressing contaminated soil that contributed to toxic groundwater. In December 2017, six granular activated carbon (GAC) devices were added to the Eielson water treatment plant to help remove PFAS from groundwater, which has contributed to lower contaminant levels.

Health Risks Linked to Drinking Water at Eielson AFB

Our law firm is currently evaluating cases where individuals were exposed to PFAS and have been diagnosed with:

Notify your doctor of any potential toxic exposure so they can monitor for early symptoms of these conditions. If you receive a diagnosis, schedule a consultation as soon as possible to learn more about your legal options. 

Eligibility Criteria for Eielson AFB Water Contamination Lawsuit

To file an Eielson Air Force Base water contamination claim: 

  1. You must have been exposed to a toxin like PFAS for six months or longer. 
  2. You must have an official diagnosis related to your toxic exposure. 

Our law firm is currently evaluating cases where individuals have been diagnosed with:

  • Bladder Cancer
  • Breast Cancer
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Leukemia
  • Liver cancer
  • Multiple-Myeloma
  • Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Testicular Cancer
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Thyroid Disease
  • Ulcerative Colitis

You will also need proof of your exposure and diagnosis to support your claim. An attorney experienced in environmental law can help you pinpoint the source of your exposure and advise what evidence is required for a successful claim.

Eielson AFB Water Contamination Settlement Amounts

Similar water contamination claims suggest Eielson AFB cases could settle anywhere from $30,000 to $500,000 with an average settlement of $250,000. However, actual amounts will vary based on the specifics of your case. 

Certain factors, such as length of exposure, amount of exposure, age at the time of diagnosis, and severity of diagnosis could lower or raise your compensation potential. For example, a case with weak evidence and short-term exposure may resolve closer to $30,000-$75,000. But a case with a severe diagnosis and plenty of evidence could reach toward $1,000,000.

How to File an Eielson AFB Water Contamination Lawsuit

Here are the steps for filing an Eielson AFB water contamination lawsuit: 

  1. Schedule a consultation with a law firm that has experience with toxic torts, such as King Law. We can confirm your eligibility and answer any initial questions you may have. 
  2. Begin gathering evidence of your time at Eielson AFB, your exposure, and your related diagnosis. Evidence is crucial to the success of your claim. 
  3. We will build your case and file it on your behalf with the appropriate court. Rest assured, we will guide you through the entire process with compassionate support. 
  4. You may be presented with the option to settle or pursue a court verdict. Many of these types of cases result in settlements, which we can negotiate on your behalf. 
  5. If your claim is successful, you will receive compensation that can be used for medical bills, lost income, and other damages you’ve experienced as a result of your harmful exposure. 

Evidence to Support Your Eielson Air Force Base Claim

Here are types of evidence that can help bolster your Eielson AFB contamination claim: 

  • Proof of your diagnosis 
  • Proof of your time at Eielson AFB 
  • Proof of toxic exposure at the base 
  • Additional evidence and testimonies connecting your exposure to your illness 
  • Additional evidence of the damages you’ve suffered 

Common examples of evidence include: 

  • Medical records, appointment history, history of symptoms, treatment plan, prognosis details 
  • Military orders, directives, discharge papers 
  • Water quality reports, press releases, military communications, site inspections
  • Scholarly articles, expert testimonies, witness statements 
  • Medical bills, income statements, details of your pain and suffering

Statute of Limitations for Eielson AFB Water Contamination Claims

Each state has a personal injury statute of limitations that gives you a deadline for when you must file a claim. If you miss this deadline, you’re typically no longer able to file a lawsuit. Certain factors may extend or shorten this deadline, so don’t delay. 

Eielson Air Force Base Water Contamination Lawyers

Choosing a reputable water contamination lawyer is extremely important when filing a PFAS lawsuit. Experienced attorneys can help navigate complex environmental regulations and appropriately identify liability and damages. They also how to negotiate for the highest settlements possible with access to essential resources that will bolster the validity of your claim. 

King Law is a choice you can rely on when it comes to handling water contamination claims. Years of experience and proven success allow us to represent you confidently. We will advocate for the justice you deserve and work relentlessly toward a successful outcome. Call us, fill out our online form, or visit us in person to schedule a free consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Learn more about Eielson AFB water contamination claims by reviewing answers to the following common questions. 

Is Eielson Air Force Base water safe to drink?
Recent water quality reports state Eielson AFB water is safe to drink. However, individuals have consumed unsafe water for years at the base and in surrounding communities, like Moose Creek.
What are the toxins in Eielson Air Force Base?
Eielson Air Force Base water has contained PFAS, arsenic, benzene, and several other contaminants of concern.
Is Eielson Air Force Base a Superfund site?
Eielson Air Force Base is a Superfund site and is on the EPA’s National Priorities List (NPL).
What is the lawsuit about Eielson Air Force Base?
Individuals are filing water contamination lawsuits after they developed serious illnesses from consuming toxic water from Eielson Air Force Base.
What are the environmental issues at Eielson Air Force Base?
Military activity at Eielson AFB, such as the use of PFAS-containing firefighting foam, has led to soil and groundwater contamination with cancer-causing chemicals.
What are the deadlines to file an Eielson Air Force Base lawsuit?
The deadline to file a water contamination lawsuit depends on the state and circumstances of your case.
What health conditions are associated with Eielson Air Force Base water contamination?
Consuming PFAS-contaminated drinking water at Eielson AFB can put individuals at risk of bladder cancer, testicular cancer, kidney cancer, pancreatic cancer, ulcerative colitis, and a series of other health conditions.
What evidence do I need for my Eielson Air Force Base lawsuit?
To file an Eielson AFB water contamination lawsuit, you must have proof of your exposure and related diagnosis.
How long will the Eielson Air Force Base lawsuit process take?
Water contamination claims can take several months or longer to resolve, so contact an attorney as soon as possible.
What steps should I take if I was affected by the Eielson Air Force Base contamination?
Seek medical care as soon as possible when you develop symptoms of a health condition related to water contamination. To pursue legal action, begin by scheduling a consultation with an attorney.
What is the average payout for the Eielson Air Force Base lawsuit or settlement?
We predict the average settlement amount for Eielson AFB water contamination lawsuits to be around $250,000. Payouts could be higher or lower depending on the strength of your case.
Is PFAS in Eielson Air Force Base water?
Yes, PFAS has been found in Eielson AFB groundwater and drinking water.
What steps has Eielson Air Force Base taken to address the PFAS contamination?
Eielson Air Force Base has conducted extensive sampling to determine the extent of PFAS contamination. They’ve also installed water filtration systems and initiated soil remediation efforts.
What are the main contaminants found in Eielson Air Force Base's drinking water?
Some of the main contaminants in Eielson AFB drinking water include PFAS, arsenic, and benzene.
Who is eligible for the Eielson Air Force Base water contamination lawsuit?
You could be eligible for an Eielson AFB water contamination lawsuit if you were exposed to a toxin for at least six months and then developed a related illness.
How can individuals affected by the Eielson Air Force Base water contamination file a lawsuit?
To file an Eielson Air Force Base water contamination lawsuit, you can contact King Law to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.