Workers Exposed to Benzene and Other Toxic Chemicals File Lawsuit Alleging Exposure Caused Leukemia and Work-Related Cancer
Fitzsimmons Law Firm PLLC recently filed a lawsuit on behalf of two workers who developed chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML) and colon cancer after being exposed to chemicals and solvents on the job. In their Complaint, the plaintiffs allege that their cancer was caused by their exposure to these harmful chemicals, specifically including the benzene and solvents used at the plant.
The plaintiffs worked at a fabricated metal product manufacturing plant and in order to perform their job, they were required to work in, around, and near hydrocarbon-containing and chlorinated hydrocarbon-containing products, chemicals and/or solvents, including benzene. The plaintiffs allege that they were chronically and systemically exposed to impermissibly high levels of chemicals and chemical vapor. Despite requiring plaintiffs to work in these conditions, the plaintiffs allege that the plant failed to provide them with adequate warnings of the hazards posed by these chemicals and solvents and failed to provide adequate safety equipment to protect plaintiffs from the harm associated with these products, including respirators. Plaintiffs further allege that the plant failed to provide adequate ventilation for the workers while they were exposed to these chemicals and vapors.
In their Complaint, the plaintiffs assert a cause of action against for "deliberate intention" under W.Va. Code § 23-4-2(d)(2)(ii). This code section is West Virginia's workplace intentional tort statute and exception to its workers' compensation exclusivity provision. Plaintiffs allege that the plant intentionally exposed them to unsafe working condition by knowingly violating and bypassing applicable OSHA regulations and other workplace safety rules and standards. The plaintiffs also asserted product liability and negligence claims against the suppliers of the chemicals and solvents alleging that they supplied cancer-causing products that were unreasonably dangerous and that they further failed to appropriately warn about the dangers and hazards associated with exposure to their chemicals.
The case is currently pending in the Circuit Court of Brooke County, West Virginia. The plaintiffs are seeking damages for their reduced life expectancy, medical bills, lost wages and benefits, pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of capacity to enjoy life and engage in normal activities, extreme anxiousness, and fear of death.
Fitzsimmons Law Firm PLLC has proud history of standing up for injured workers. Our trial attorneys have represented workers injured or killed on the job in numerous types of claims including mesothelioma, chemical and toxic exposure, oil and gas accidents, coal mining accidents, drilling accidents, construction and industrial accidents, and burn injuries. Our attorneys have secured over $800 Million in verdicts and settlements for our clients, including 150 cases in excess of $1 Million.