By Buddy Blouin
Contaminated water in Hawaii due to the military leak at Red Hill may be worse than previously thought. Water contamination in Hawaii continues to be a hot issue because resolutions haven’t yet been made. Now, it appears that the Hawaii water contamination may have involved more than just jet fuel, antifreeze was also present. A new memo is bringing to light these new revelations and further exasperating the tension between families looking for a way forward and a military they feel is being less than supportive in the process.

Related: The Red Hill Water Crisis Lawsuits Are Underway

Pearl Harbor Residents Also Drank Antifreeze Due to Hawaii Water Contamination

According to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, a memo leaked from the Hawaii Department of Health (DOH) shows that Hawaii water contamination was not only exposing military families to tainted drinking water at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickham, but also civilian families. Furthermore, the Red Hill water crisis also contained antifreeze in addition to jet fuel. This revolution only adds to an already terrible situation involving the aftermath of the Hawaii-contaminated water believed to be caused by a spill at the Red Hill Underground Storage Facility. Although it was previously reported that fuel-contaminated water was causing issues, it’s now believed that an antifreeze compound was also leaked. The reason that antifreeze is now suspected comes from diethylene glycol being detected in water samples following the Hawaii Navy water contamination incident. If found to be true, this adds yet another significant health risk to those already suffering from contaminated water sources. The compound is necessary to help prevent fuel in aircraft from freezing. Sadly, during spills, these compounds are easily absorbed by groundwater. So far, legal action continues to mount as a result of the contamination which affected somewhere around 10,000 homes in the area.

Memo Brought to Light as Red Hill Facility Lawsuits Intensify

More and more information is coming to light centering around the Hawaii water crisis. The symptoms that families have claimed to endure don’t seem to be being taken as seriously as those afflicted would care to see, and now, a memo is stating that there are even more concerns than initially thought. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnjWk54IuL4 Families continue to seek answers and retribution as a result of the leak. Even before the news of antifreeze potentially intensifying the Hawaii water leak crisis, many households were experiencing diarrhea, skin irritations, and vomiting in the aftermath of the contamination. So far, the Navy and DOH haven’t responded to the findings inside of the memo, but it feels like this may just be a repeat of events following the initial contamination. Attorneys representing military families suing the Navy over jet fuel exposure provided the DOH memo to the Star-Advertiser.

Suggested Read: Navy Opening Clinic for Those Affected By Red Hill Fuel Spill

Therefore, it once again brings us to the various legal dances such parties play during times like these. Regardless, there are still families with various claims of suffering that believe they aren’t being helped by the military but rather dealing with gaslighting as they seek answers and compensation. "This amended lawsuit adds to the story of a government that poisoned its people, failed to treat them, and told sick families they were not sick. The fight goes on to hold the government accountable for its conduct before, during, and after the Red Hill contamination. These families still do not know what exactly was in the water they ingested and bathed in for months," said Attorney Kristina Baehr, the lawyer representing the families, via press release.

Hawaii Water Contamination Aftermath Should Learn From the Past

Accidents happen, but when they do, it’s important for the responsible party to make things right. This sentiment is true for everyone, but to deny resources and aid to military families who have served or supported those who've served our nation is a classless stance to take. Unfortunately, there is always going to be a bit of back and forth in the legal system after any incident as all parties do what they can to protect themselves. But the U.S. military would do well to learn from its previous mishaps and move past this incident with couth and candor. You don’t have to be a part of the military to have seen the ongoing advertisements for Camp Lejeune water contamination. This is one such incident in which the health of those serving and their families were accidentally exposed to tainted water. The military response to the Navy water contamination in Hawaii can use these examples to handle things better. If the American military is going to have good relations with not only the people in and around its community but the very people it is taking an obligation to defend, then that starts with accountability and responsibility. Regardless of who did what and how things happened, the people in the area deserve answers and solutions for the Hawaii water contamination incident sooner rather than later.

Read Next: What’s Being Done About the Navy-Poisoned Hawaii Drinking Water?




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