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Imprelis Victims Skeptical of Dupont’s Promises

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Not just home owners, but business owners, are dealing with the fallout from DuPont’s Imprelis broad leaf herbicide fiasco that has killed or left many trees damaged, dying, or dead. DuPont promised to fix the problems, but many wonder what really can be done. In one case, said FreeP, a lawn care firm sprayed Imprelis on over 3,000 properties with Imprelis; now, trees are dying on clients’ properties and, in some cases, neighboring properties. DuPont began selling Imprelis to licensed landscapers last October after it received conditional Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approval. Sold as an environmentally safe solution for controlling broadleaf weeds, the herbicide was soon linked to dead and damaged trees, mostly evergreens, where Imprelis was sprayed. Trees suffer from twisting and curling, as well as browning of needles, shoots, and branch tips. After the EPA revoked its approval of Imprelis, banning its use or sale, DuPont promised to “promptly and fairly resolve problems” linked to Imprelis, said FreeP. But, even if those harmed receive insurance compensation, they could still end up paying upwards of $100,000 in deductibles, noted FreeP. Landscapers are concerned they could lose customers and homeowners are devastated over the loss of cherished trees, which, in many cases, have been on their land for decades or generations. An attorney representing plaintiffs in about one dozen Imprelis lawsuits said DuPont’s recent Imprelis recall might have been the right thing to do, but its steps are not sufficient to ensure Imprelis victims are made

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whole, said NewsInferno. He also criticized DuPont for not taking immediate action. “The damage has already been done, but the recall does stop the bleeding,” said Jordan Chaikin, a partner in the national law firm of Parker Waichman LLP. Chaikin’s firm has filed Imprelis lawsuits on behalf of client groups in a growing number of states and additional actions are expected. How trees will be valued and replaced remains unknown and property owners wonder how dead or dying trees will be removed and replaced with comparable trees, noted FreeP. The cost, especially on properties with sprinkler systems and dealing with removing and replacing Imprelis-tainted soil, could be catastrophic. In an earlier interview with The New York Times, Chaikin said DuPont could face more than a billion dollars in damages over Imprelis litigation. “You are talking about a lot of people who have dead trees 40 to 50 feet tall, 30 or 50 years old that each cost $20,000 or $25,000 to replace,” he told the Times.

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