Don’t Let Company Dodge Obligations

Freedom Industries, responsible for the chemical spill that interrupted water supplies for about 300,000 West Virginians, already is in serious trouble. It has filed for bankruptcy as lawsuits against it continue to pile up.

Perhaps it is time to add criminal charges to the mix.

State Department of Environmental Protection officials revealed Wednesday that the leaky tank contained not one chemical, as previous reports indicated, but two. About 400 gallons of polyglycol ethers, or PPH, was mixed in with the thousands of gallons of 4-methylcyclohexane methanol in the tank. It appears PPH is less toxic than the other substance.

Freedom Industries had not disclosed presence of the PPH in the tank.

As DEP Secretary Randy Huffman said, that is not acceptable. State officials should notify Freedom Industries executives that unless they come completely clean about the spill, they will be prosecuted.