Flint’s Deadly Water

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STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • The water crisis in Flint, Michigan, began in April 2014, when the state took over city management and decided to switch the city’s water supply from treated Detroit water to water from the highly-polluted Flint River
  • Problems became apparent almost immediately. Residents noticed their tap water had turned a dirty brown, and had an odd smell and taste
  • Thousands of Flint residents have been poisoned by lead-contaminated water. On top of that, the water switch spawned one of the largest outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease in the U.S.
  • The Legionella contamination was the real killer in this case, having officially led to the death of 12 people, but unofficially may have killed dozens more. Cases of Legionnaires’ disease are still being reported in Flint today
  • While nine state and local officials were charged with criminal offenses for their role in the water crisis, all charges were dropped after the newly appointed attorney general appointed new prosecutors who dismissed the charges and started a new investigation from scratch

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