The U.S. Dept. of Justice has joined a whistleblower lawsuit that charges that ATK Thiokol Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Alliant Techsystems, Inc., knowingly sold the U.S. military
flares that could ignite if dropped from low heights, creating a major safety hazard.
The flares, used to illuminate nighttime combat and rescue missions, were required to meet safety standards that assured they wouldn’t ignite while they were being handled. The whistleblower, a manager of the flare program, learned of the safety problem and alerted the company. The company was already aware of the potential danger but never communicated this to the government and never tested the flares.
The whistleblower, Kendall Dye, is represented by the law firm of Phillips & Cohen LLP, which specializes in representing whistleblowers in qui tam suits under the False Claims Act.
The PR News release of June 25, 2007 has additional details, as does the Dept. of Justice press release.