Man Files Benzene Leukemia Lawsuit

Shell and several other large oil and energy companies are being sued by an Illinois man who claims that he developed leukemia exposure after being exposed to toxic materials from a refinery near where he grew up.

Andrew Kayser filed the benzene lawsuit on September 9 in Madison County Circuit Court.  His compliant names a number of defendants:

  • BP Products North America
  • ConocoPhillips Company
  • Shell Oil Company
  • WRB Refining
  • URS Corporation

In his benzene lawsuit, Kayser states that he was raised near the Wood River Refinery in Roxana, Illinois. The refinery has already been sued for numerous benzene spills and cited for a number of pollution violations.
Kayser was diagnosed with acute lymphocyticleukemia in 2003.  This form of leukemia has been associated with benzene exposure.  In his complaint, Kayser states that he has suffered premature aging of his skeletal structure, requiring him to undergo bilateral knee replacement surgery and causing damage to his teeth.  He has also had his spleen removed after benzene leukemia complications.

Earlier in 2011, Roxana, Illinois residents filed a class action groundwater contamination lawsuit over benzene spills from the same refinery, which they claim lowered property values in the small town of roughly 1,500 people.  The plaintiffs alleged that an underground pipeline that went from the refinery to a barge loading facility on the Mississippi River leaked at least 8,400 gallons of benzene, blaming Shell.  The spill contaminated groundwater supplies for the town, and similar leaks occurred from a BP factory.

The EPA has cited these facilities a number of times for violating environmental protection laws.  In May 2008, Shell was cited for excessive releases of benzene and other chemicals into Roxana’s groundwater.  When a heat wave hit the Midwest this summer, Illinois environmental officials warned Roxana residents not to sleep in their basements because the risk of benzene exposure could endanger their health.
Benzene is an industrial chemical that has been associated with the development of a number of fatal cancers, such as:

  • Acute myelogenous leukemia (AML)
  • Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML)
  • Acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL)
  • Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)
  • Hairy cell leukemia (HCL)
  • Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDL)
  • Myelofibrosis
  • Myeloid metaplasia
  • Aplastic anemia
  • Thrombocytopenic purpura

Contact a Benzene Exposure Lawyer

If you believe your illness can be attributed to benzene exposure, you may be entitled to collect significant compensation for your medical bills and other damages in a toxic exposure lawsuit.  Contact a personal injury lawyer today for a  free legal consultation.

Sept. 29, 2011 | Tags: Benzene, Toxic Exposure

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