Updated April 12th, 2024 at 21:37 IST

Johnson Controls' Tyco Fire Products agrees to $750 million settlement over PFAS contamination

The settlement, subject to approval by a federal judge, aims to assist cities, towns, and other public water systems in remediating contamination.

Reported by: Business Desk
Johnson Controls' Tyco Fire Products | Image:Johnson Controls

Johnson lawsuit: Johnson Controls, through its subsidiary Tyco Fire Products, announced a $750 million settlement on Friday with several US public water systems. The settlement resolves claims that toxic "forever chemicals" in firefighting foam manufactured by the company had contaminated their water supplies.

The settlement, subject to approval by a federal judge, aims to assist cities, towns, and other public water systems in remediating contamination of per- and polyfluoralkyl substances (PFAS). Johnson Controls clarified in a regulatory filing that the settlement does not imply any admission of liability or wrongdoing by Tyco, and the company had already recorded a charge for this amount in the second quarter ended March 31.


Paul Napoli, an attorney for the water systems, stated, "This settlement resolves claims involving contaminated drinking water and provides compensation critical to protecting our nation’s drinking water supplies and upgrading our water treatment infrastructure to deal with this new emerging threat."

PFAS are a group of chemicals found in various consumer and commercial products, including firefighting foams, non-stick pans, and stain-resistant fabrics. These chemicals, known as "forever chemicals," are difficult to break down in nature or the human body and have been linked to cancer and other diseases.


Tyco is one of nearly two dozen chemical companies facing lawsuits related to PFAS pollution. These lawsuits, centralised in a South Carolina federal court, focus on PFAS contamination of groundwater resulting from firefighting foams used at firehouses and airports across the country.

In related news, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently finalised the first federal regulations on PFAS in drinking water, setting stringent limits on the amount of PFAS allowed in public water systems. These regulations could potentially facilitate water systems suing companies over PFAS contamination, although legal challenges are expected.


The settlement with Tyco is part of a broader legal landscape where major chemical companies have faced substantial settlements with water systems over PFAS contamination. The settlement with Tyco includes an initial payment of $250 million expected by May, with the remaining $500 million to be paid six months after receiving preliminary approval from the court.

(with Reuters inputs)


Published April 12th, 2024 at 21:37 IST