Thursday's lecturer, E. Scott
Bair, has found that groundwater conditions at Woburn, Mass., were worst during the
periods when leukemia victims' mothers were pregnant.
11, 2000 (Lexington, Ky.)
An Ohio State University hydrogeologist will discuss the trial made famous by the book and
movie A Civil Action and his research into the questions the trial left
unanswered at 4 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 13, at the University of Kentucky William T. Young
1982, eight families in Woburn, Mass., filed suit against W.R. Grace and Beatrice Foods,
claiming two city wells were contaminated by improper disposal of industrial chemicals,
causing leukemia and other health problems. The jury determined Beatrice had not
contaminated the wells, and Grace and the plaintiffs later settled out of court.
issue of whether or not the contaminated water caused the leukemia was not addressed at
the trial. However, Thursdays lecturer, E. Scott Bair, has found that groundwater
conditions at the Woburn site were worst during the periods when the victims mothers
were pregnant, supporting the argument that a predisposition to leukemia might have
resulted from fetal exposure to the contaminated water.
is chairman of the OSU Department of Geological Sciences. His lecture Thursday is UKs
23rd annual Birdsall-Dreiss Distinguished Lecture in Hydrogeology and is the
first in the spring semesters Geological Sciences seminar series. The lecture is
free and open to the public and is co-sponsored by the Kentucky Water Research Institute.