Dupont Decision

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The state Supreme Court says DuPont Chemical Company is not required to pay for testing in a medical monitoring lawsuit involving the company's Washington Works plant.

Friday's four-to-one decision stems from Wood County Circuit Judge George Hill Junior's ruling that required DuPont to pay for blood tests for residents who are suing the company over its use of the chemical C-8.

The residents say the chemical has contaminated their drinking water. The chemical is used by DuPont to produce Teflon and other products. In writing for the court, Justice Elliott Maynard says the lower court's ruling was overturned because DuPont wasn't given proper notice in the case.

Maynard also wrote that the plaintiffs can't use DuPont to finance their attempts to learn if the chemical has injured them. Friday's ruling combined a second case involving Hill and DuPont. The high court says Hill can't continue to hear matters in the case until the justices decide if he should be disqualified.

DuPont says Hill shouldn't hear the case because he lives in Parkersburg and the city's water contains detectable levels of C-8. Harry Deitzler, the plaintiffs' attorney, says the rulings Friday should not affect the overall lawsuit local residents filed in 2001.