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Benzene Exposure Lawsuit

Exposure to the widely-used chemical benzene has been linked to an increased risk for the development of many serious, potentially life-threatening side effects including Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) and Myelodysplastic Syndrome. (MDS).

Benzene is a known carcinogen, or cancer-causing substance, and has been linked to an increased risk for the disease in humans. Inhaling benzene vapors may cause immediate death, and other exposures to the chemical have been linked to various forms of leukemia, most notably Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) and Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS).

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What is Benzene?

Benzene is a chemical compound that occurs naturally in the environment and can be manufactured synthetically as well. This sweet smelling chemical compound is colorless or slightly tinged yellow in its liquid form and is extremely flammable. Liquid benzene evaporates rapidly into the air, but dissolves only slightly when introduced to water. In fact, when benzene is placed in water most of the chemical remains floating on the surface of the water. Considered an aromatic hydrocarbon, benzene is a known human carcinogen and has been found to cause a wide variety of adverse side effects and complications in individuals that have been exposed to benzene in high concentrations or for long periods of time.

Benzene occurs in the natural environment when materials rich in carbon begin to burn but are not completely consumed by the fire. Benzene is typically present around volcanoes and forest fires, but can also be found in cigarette smoke. The chemical can also pass into the air from contaminated water or soil, where it is broken down by other chemicals in the air in a matter of a few days. The synthesized form of benzene is obtained from compounds found in petroleum. Previously obtained as a byproduct of coal processing and coke production, the petroleum industry began to produce synthetic benzene to meet the huge demand from industry consumers for the chemical. In recent years, the production of benzene has increased from 9.9 billion pounds annually to 12 billion pounds annually.

Benzene is used for a wide variety of applications in numerous industries all over the world. Before the dangerous nature of benzene was discovered, many men used benzene as an aftershave due to its sweet smell. Benzene was also commonly used as an additive to gasoline to increase the octane rating of the gasoline while reducing the knocking that can occur in the engine. Benzene has been used as an industrial solvent for degreasing machinery and used in the process of decaffeinating coffee beans, applications that have been reduced or eliminated in most of the world due to the dangerous nature of benzene.

Currently, the most common uses of benzene include the production of drug and medications, the production of plastics, the production of rubber, and the production of dyes. Small amounts of benzene are used in the production of lubricants, detergents, pesticides, explosives, or napalm. Benzene is commonly used to create chemical derivatives that can be used in the production of other items. The most frequently used derivatives of benzene include phenol, which is used in the creation of resin and adhesives; styrene, which is used to create plastics; cyclohexane, which is used in the production of Nylon; and aniline, used to create polyurethane.

Most of the benzene present in the environment has been released from industrial processes. It is estimated that 100,000 locations within the United States have been contaminated with benzene in either the water or the soil, which also eventually ascends into the air. Acceptable levels of benzene in both the environment and in consumable items have been regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration to ensure that the level of benzene does not cause harm to the individuals exposed to it. Workplace safety rules dealing with benzene have also been put into place by the US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to ensure that workers who handle benzene on the job are safe from harm the chemical can cause.

Benzene Side Effects

The most common ways for individuals to become exposed to benzene is through occupational or environmental sources. Exposure to benzene is typically harmful when individuals are exposed to high levels of the chemical or remain exposed to the chemical for long periods of time.

Harmful short-term exposure to benzene typically occurs in one of three ways. Either the individual has breathed in high concentrations of benzene, high levels of benzene have been absorbed through the skin, or benzene has contaminated food that the individual has eaten. Taking benzene into the lungs through breathing can result in dizziness, drowsiness, headaches, confusion, rapid heart rate, and unconsciousness. If the individual is not removed from the affected area within a short period of time, they may die from benzene exposure. If benzene comes into contact with the skin or eyes of an individual, the chemical may cause tissue irritation and damage. If the skin or eyes come into direct contact with benzene, the individual must flush their eyes and wash the chemical off of their skin as soon as possible to avoid further damage.

Food contamination with benzene is a rare occurrence. Individuals that have ingested food or water contaminated with benzene may experience nausea, vomiting, stomach irritation, abdominal pain, convulsions, and death. The vomiting caused by the ingestion of food contaminated with benzene is especially dangerous as it can flow into the lungs causing breathing difficulties and uncontrollable coughing. The symptoms associated with short-term benzene poisoning will typically manifest within a few minutes to a few hours depending on the level of benzene affecting the individual. The amount the poisoning will affect the individual depends on the amount of benzene present, the length of time the individual is exposed, and the general health of the individual affected.

The side effects and complications associated with long-term exposure to benzene are even more numerous. The major complications of long-term benzene exposure primarily affect the blood, damaging the bone marrow and inhibiting the production of red blood cells. This can result in anemia or the development of leukemia. The loss of white blood cells and antibodies can change the typical balance of the blood causing even more issues. Long-term benzene exposure also suppresses the immune system, lowering the body’s ability to fight off infection.

Benzene exposures of less than 5 years to nearly 30 years have been associated with a large number of leukemia cases, some of them fatal. Precautions must be taken by individuals that come into contact with benzene through industrial and environmental means to limit their exposure and reduce the risk of developing potentially deadly side effects and complications.

How Are People Exposed to Benzene?

Benzene can cause a wide variety of adverse side effects and complications if individuals are exposed to high concentrations of the chemical or are exposed to benzene for long periods of time.

Benzene can occur naturally in the environment when carbon-rich elements are burned but do not burn completely. High concentrations of benzene can be found in the areas around forest fires and volcanoes where carbon rich materials burn almost constantly. Breathing in the air in these locations can be enough to cause benzene poisoning, resulting in dizziness, headaches, confusion, and unconsciousness. Breathing high levels of benzene in these areas for an extended period of time can result in death. Lower levels of benzene can be released into the environment by filling stations, cigarette smoke, automobile service stations, and emissions from industrial plants. Although the levels of benzene in these areas are not very high, long-term exposure can still cause adverse effects.

Another common way that individuals are exposed to dangerous levels of benzene is through occupational exposure. There are many industries that use benzene in their everyday operations, increasing the risk that their employees will be exposed to dangerous levels of benzene. The amount of benzene manufactured annually for use in various industries totals in the millions of gallons, resulting in profits totaling in the billions of dollars. Benzene is commonly used to manufacture drugs, synthetic fibers, lubricants, dyes, and pesticides. Individuals that have worked in industries that commonly use benzene in their production are at an increased risk of developing the adverse side effects associated with long term exposure to benzene.

The third way that individuals can be exposed to dangerous concentrations of benzene is through accidental exposure. Benzene has the ability to contaminate water, soil, and food and the ingestion of the contaminated items can make an individual very ill. Most of the benzene found to contaminate water and soil has been released through industrial processes and experts estimate that there are over 100,000 sites of benzene contamination in the United States alone. Benzene dissolves only slightly in water with the majority of the chemical resting on top of the water. Benzene can also be released from the contaminated water and soil into the air, making the air dangerous to breath for long periods of time. The ingestion of food contaminated with benzene can result in nausea, vomiting, dizziness, convulsions, and death. Individuals may also be exposed to benzene in their homes by breathing the fumes of some cleaning supplies, lubrications, glues, or paints.

Who is at risk of Benzene exposure?

Occupational Exposure: workers in many industries that produce or use benzene may be at risk for being exposed to this horrible carcinogen. Some of these occupations include:

  • Mechanic (auto, marine, aviation, etc.)
  • Benzene production (petrochemicals, petroleum refining, and coke and coal chemical manufacturing)
  • Tire manufacturing
  • Printing industry
  • Storage or transport of benzene and petroleum products containing benzene

Other workers who may be exposed to benzene because of their occupations include workers in the rubber industry, pesticides production, detergent production, solvent production, paint and varnish production, waste management, oil refineries, chemical plants, shoe manufacturers, petroleum processing industries, steel workers, laboratory technicians, firefighters, and gas station employees.

Environmental Exposure: although benzene exposure normally occurs in the workplace, there have been many instances of industrial discharge, disposal of products containing benzene, and gasoline leaks from underground storage tanks that have released benzene into our soil and water supplies, thus creating environmental benzene exposure situations.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has responded to environmental benzene exposure problems by setting the maximum permissible level of benzene in drinking water at 0.005 milligrams per liter (0.005 mg/L). EPA requires that spills or accidental releases into the environment of 10 pounds or more of benzene be reported to the agency immediately.

Consumer Exposure: some household products, such as glues, cleaning products, detergents, art supplies, and paint strippers, contain benzene. In addition, there has recently been quite a bit of news surrounding the discovery of benzene in soda and soft drinks.

Unfortunately, many companies consider the addition of benzene to their products as a “trade secret” and therefore do not list it on the product labeling. This corporate strategy poses a serious risk to consumers who become victims of unknown benzene exposure.

What are the side effects of Benzene exposure?

There are potential acute (short-term) and chronic (long-term) side effects when a person is exposed to benzene. The chemical has been linked to the following:

  • Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML)
  • Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS)
  • Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma
  • Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia
  • Myelofibrosis and Myeloid Metaplasia
  • Aplastic Anemia
  • Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL)
  • Hairy Cell Leukemia
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Thrombocytopenic Purpura
  • Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML)
  • Hematologic Cancers
  • Bladder Cancer
  • And more

List of Products that Contain Benzene

  • Liquid Wrench
  • Rust-Ban 392
  • Sunoco Household Oil
  • 3-In-One Electric Motor Oil
  • 3-In-One Household Oil
  • Gardner Blacktop Driveway Sealer
  • Gardner EZ STIR Filler Sealer
  • Parks Furniture Refinisher
  • Parks Adhesive Remover
  • Parks Mineral Spirits Paint Thinner
  • Parks Lacquer Thinner
  • Parks Brush Cleaner
  • Parks PRO liquid Paint Stripper
  • Parks liquid Strip
  • Parks Lacquer Thinner 6/13/97
  • Parks Adhesive Remover 9/4/98
  • Parks liquid Deglosser 9/4/98
  • Gumoutregane Premium Gas Treatment
  • Gumoutxtra 1 Tank Carb Cleaner
  • Gumouttune Up Spray
  • Gumoutcarb/Fuel Injector Cleaner (Aerosol)
  • Gumoutcarb/Fuel Injector Cleaner (liquid)
  • Gumoutdiesel Fuel System Cleaner
  • Gumoutcold Weather Diesel Treatment
  • Gumoutliquid Intake Cleaner
  • Classic Aerosol Wax
  • Champion Carb. Cleaner
  • Champion Flush Off Degreaser
  • Champion Brake Cleaner
  • Champion Cold Galvanize
  • Champion Galv Off
  • Champion CS+
  • Champion N/F 4 Way Penetrating Oil
  • Champion Stainless Steel Cleaner
  • Champion X It Out Vandal Mark Remover
  • Champion Super Lubricant
  • Champion Spray Paint
  • Champion Flying Insect Killer
  • Champion Fire Ant Killer
  • Champion Multi Insect/lice Killer
  • Champion Indoor Insect Fogger
  • Champion Ant & Roach
  • Champion Metered Insecticide
  • Bonide Grass, Weed & Vegetation Killer
  • Ortho Weed-B-Gone
  • Staffel’s Screwwork Compound-U.S.
  • Formula M 62 Insecticide
  • Dr. Rogers Screw Worm Smear Formula No. 62
  • Martin’s Formula No. 62 Screw Work Smear for Horses and Mules
  • Thoroseal Redi Mix Paint
  • Naptha
  • VM & P Naptha

Benzene in Toluene Products

  • Ethylbenzene
  • Toluene
  • Toluene + Xylene
  • Xylene
  • Benzene in Organic Solvents
  • Butadiene
  • Butene
  • Cumene
  • Cyclohexanol
  • Cyclohexanol C
  • Dichloropentadiene
  • Isoprene
  • Monochlorobenzene
  • Piperylene
  • Hexane
  • Hexane C

Benzene in Solvents and Other Products

  • Asphalts
  • Calibrating Fluid
  • Charcoal lighter Fluid
  • Contact cements
  • C9 Aromatics
  • Dicyclopentadiene
  • Elastomeric Adhesives
  • Ethylbenzene
  • Hexane
  • Hydraulic Fluds
  • Kerosene
  • Ink Markers
  • Lacquer Thinner
  • Lantern Fuel & Gas Stove
  • Leather Black and Stain
  • liquid Polish
  • Mineral Spirits
  • 140* Flash Aliphatic
  • 140* Flash Aliphatic: Solvent
  • Paste Polish
  • Rubber Cement
  • Rubber Solvent
  • Shell DAN
  • Shell Rubber solvent
  • Shell Sol Bj-77BG
  • Shell Sol BJ-19EG
  • Spray Lubricant
  • Slop Oil
  • Solvasol
  • Solvasol 2
  • Stoddard Solvent
  • Trimethybenzene
  • Unland screen developer
  • Varnish Makers
  • Vinyl Thinner
  • VM & P napthol
  • Coke Ovens

PLEASE NOTE: This is not a comprehensive list of products that contain benzene. If you feel you have been injured by exposure to a product that is not on this list, please contact our attorneys to discuss your legal rights. You may be entitled to compensation through the filing of a lawsuit and we can help.

Benzene and the Steel Industry

Benzene is produced from burning materials that contain carbon, according to the World health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). Coal and coke contain large amounts of carbon, and as their fumes are released into the air during the steel manufacturing process,benzene is produced and released into the environment.

One of the most toxic benzene sources in the steel manufacturing industry is the coking process, which is used to turn coal into coke. During this process, large quantities of coal are burned in order to create the coke that is used to manufacture steel. When the coal is burned, it releases large amounts of smoke containing benzene into the air. Any individuals that are near this process or can breathe in any of the smoke are simultaneously inhaling benzene. Over time, the benzene present in the body causes damage to the person’s DNA, potentially causing the development of life-threatening health complications.

Individuals that are directly involved in the coking process have a much higher risk of developing complications related to benzene exposure than members of the general public. Although awareness of the problems associated with benzene has encouraged many steel manufacturers to take precautions against benzene exposure, there is still benzene present in the air at many of these facilities. The fumes from the coking process permeate nearly every area of the manufacturing facility, causing all employees to be at risk.

There is no way to predict which individuals will develop complications associated with long-term benzene exposure. Some individuals that have only been exposed to benzene fumes for several months may develop complications quickly, while an individual that has been working around benzene fumes for decades may never have any complications. Many individuals do not know that damage to their bodies has occurred due to benzene exposure until the symptoms of a complication begin to appear and they seek medical treatment. Most of the complications associated with prolonged benzene exposure are incurable, and there may be no effective treatment available for individuals that develop the conditions.

Benzene and the Shipping Industry

Individuals that work in the shipping and transport industry handle thousands of different products during the course of their employment and in many cases, may not even know exactly what they are transporting other than the name of the product. Because such an array of products are handled by this industry on a regular basis, many individuals may not realize they have been exposed to high concentrations of benzene until they begin experiencing side effects.

Individuals who drive the trucks that transport chemicals containing benzene are at a potential increased risk of developing complications related to long-term benzene exposure. This is because benzene is released in the fumes of these chemicals, often in significant concentrations. Any individual who is exposed to these fumes for a long period of time, such as the driver of a truck that is transporting products containing the chemical, will be breathing in these fumes and accumulating benzene in the body without knowing it. Although the benzene is eventually eliminated from the body, the damage it has caused remains.

Because truck drivers often do not believe themselves to be at risk, either because they are in a different area of the truck or because they believe air flow is sufficient to move the benzene fumes away from their face, they typically do not take any precautions to limit their benzene exposure. The damage caused by the benzene in their bodies slowly increases until they begin to experience the symptoms of a benzene related complications. Once the symptoms of one of these benzene-related conditions appear, it is usually too late to do anything other than manage the symptoms for as long as they can.

Truck drivers are not the only workers in this industry that are at risk for long term benzene exposure and related complications. Individuals that work at loading or unloading shipping containers are also at risk. These individuals come into close contact with the products and chemicals containing benzene on a regular basis and are much closer to the source of the benzene fumes than the individuals driving the trucks. This means that the individuals that are unloading the shipping containers may be breathing in a much higher concentration of benzene while they are on the job.

Benzene and the Tire/Rubber Manufacturing Industry

A large amount of benzene is used in the production of rubber and tires, according to the IARC. People who work in this industry may be at an increased risk of developing severe health complications.

Individuals who work in the shipping/receiving departments of these manufacturing facilities may be at an increased risk for complications from benzene exposure. The products that are used in facilities which contain benzene are typically shipped there in drums transported by trucks. As many cases of benzene exposure are due to breathing in fumes from products containing benzene, this means that the drivers of the trucks, the individuals who unload the trucks, those who count the number of drums, and the workers that place the drums into storage are all breathing in the fumes escaping from the drums that contain benzene.

Individuals that work in the manufacturing facility on the production line also have an increased risk of developing complications from benzene exposure. The benzene-containing products are used in numerous steps during the production of rubber and tires, and each step potentially releases more benzene into the air at the facility. Many of these production steps also use heat in the manufacturing process, allowing the benzene fumes to escape from the products more easily. Any individual that is present near the production line while the rubber, rubber products, or tires are being manufactured are possibly breathing in high amounts of benzene during their entire shift at the manufacturing facility.

The individuals that maintain the equipment and clean the facility are also at risk for long term benzene exposure and the complications associated with it. Although they may not be working on the production line or handling the products containing benzene directly, they are still working in an environment with a high concentration of benzene fumes in the air. Any individual that works in this type of environment for a long period of time will be breathing in large amounts of benzene fumes on a daily basis, which may result in the development of benzene associated complications later in life.

Whether the individual is working directly with the products that contain benzene or is merely in the areas where they may encounter benzene fumes for a long period of time, the element of risk for developing complications from long term benzene exposure is present. Not all individuals that have been exposed to benzene fumes will develop the associated complications, and length of exposure can be anywhere from a few months to 20 years. There is no way to predict which individuals will develop benzene related complications, but everyone that has been exposed has an increased risk of developing complications.

Benzene and Other Industries

There are millions of barrels of benzene used by industries in the United States annually and hundreds of millions of products containing benzene are manufactured across the nation each year.

There are numerous industries in the U.S. that utilize benzene in some form as part of their business. Some of these industries use large amounts of benzene or benzene-containing products on a frequent basis, while others use small amounts every once in a while for minor purposes. Some industries produce large amounts of benzene or benzene fumes as a result of their manufacturing processes, and some only use benzene-containing agents to clean and maintain their equipment.

Many of the industries where workers are at risk for long term benzene exposure and the related complications are well known, such as chemical manufacturing plants and petroleum refineries. But other industries where the workers may be at risk are not so obvious. One such industry is the shoe manufacturing industry. In the shoe manufacturing process, products containing benzene are used to bind the soles of the shoes to the upper portion. This is typically accomplished using an adhesive or cementing agent that contains a high concentration of benzene. As the worker continually secures the parts of the shoes together, they are simultaneously breathing in benzene fumes released by the cementing agent.

Another industry where long term benzene exposure may occur is the railroad industry. This can occur for several reasons. One reason is that the individuals that work in this sector are constantly being exposed to the exhaust released by the train engines. Engine exhaust contains benzene, just like car exhaust does, because of the burning of petroleum fuel that occurs within the engine. Another way that workers in the railroad industry may be exposed to high concentrations of benzene is from the chemicals that are transported by train. Many companies that need to transport chemicals, petroleum, or other benzene-containing products to various locations around the country use trains for the transport because of the lower cost and lower risk of casualties if any problems should occur.

There are numerous small businesses across the nation that regularly use products containing benzene for various needs in the course of business. Many of these businesses use solvents containing benzene to clean their equipment. Other businesses use inks, paints, stains, and sealers that can release benzene fumes into the workplace. Benzene exposure is common and products containing the chemical can be found in numerous places.

Colorado Petroleum Site Reports Emitting High Levels of Benzene

December 21, 2017 – Anadarko Petroleum Corporation has discovered benzene-contaminated groundwater and soil at a site in Dacono, Colorado, according to a report filed by the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC). COGCC discovered the problem while trying to dig up an old pump earlier this month, according to the Denver Post. The commission required Anadarko to remove 200 barrels of contaminated groundwater, and lab tests found benzene levels 900 times the amount allowed by Colorado law.

A spokeswoman for Anadarko said the company is in the process of removing a tank battery at the site, and that’s how they discovered the toxic groundwater.

COGCC said it is still conducting tests to determine whether nearby water wells were contaminated, but said these types of releases usually don’t go beyond the immediate area.

High Levels of Benzene Found in Texas After Hurricane Harvey

September 11, 2017 – Houston residents trying to return to flooded homes after Hurricane Harvey should wear breathing masks to protect against molds and the carcinogen benzene from the city’s sewers, the EPA is warning.

After surviving the wrath of Hurricane Harvey and heavy flooding that left thousands of Texas homes inundated, families attempting to get their lives back to normal are facing a new series of threats.

More than 450,000 Texas residents are still either without water or need to boil their water to prevent illness, according to The New York Times. Affected areas include parts of Houston, where flood waters have not completely receded nearly 2 weeks after the hurricane touched down on the city.

Houston fire chief Samuel Peña said residents should wear breathing masks and even consider getting their Tetanus shots updated because the city’s sewage system had flooded and leaked. Peña explained that when the streets finally dry out, the bacteria from the sewage will become airborne, creating a breathing hazard. He also said that residents will need to watch for snakes, alligators, rodents and spiders.

EPA said on Saturday that 40 of 1,219 wastewater treatment plants were inoperable, and 52 drinking water systems were not working properly. A spokesperson from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) said about 70,000 people were without water because their drinking water systems were inoperable.

According to the TCEQ, around 380,000 Texas residents are still under a boil water notice because an additional 161 drinking water systems were contaminated. A total of 2,238 drinking water systems were affected by Hurricane Harvey, the agencies said. At least 101 systems are still being assessed, or their condition is just not known.

Turtle Wax Requests Dismissal of Illinois Benzene Lawsuit

July 12, 2017 – Turtle Wax has filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a man who claims he developed acute myeloid leukemia (AML) from benzene exposure.

Plaintiff Matthew Eaton filed a first amended complaint last month in Chesterfield, Missouri, according to the Madison – St. Clair Record.

In the suit, Eaton claims he was exposed to benzene and benzene fumes from products he worked with for years as a service station employee. The complaint was filed against the following defendants:

  • Turtle Wax, Inc.
  • BP Corporation North America Inc.
  • Phillips 66 Company
  • Bauman Oil Distributors Inc.
  • Carter Oil Company
  • 3M Company, also known as Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing
  • Berryman Products
  • B’Laster Corporation
  • Berwind Corporation, doing business as CRC Industries
  • Safety-Kleen Systems Inc.

Turtle Wax argues that Eaton’s suit lacks merit by failing to provide specific facts, including:

  • The location of where the benzene exposure occurred;
  • Specific types of benzene-containing products alleged to have caused his injury, and
  • Dates and frequency of the alleged benzene exposure.

Defendant furthermore argues that Eaton’s lawsuit is barred by the doctrines of laches, waiver and estoppel; and is preempted by federal and state law. Turtle Wax filed a motion to dismiss on June 15 in St. Louis.

The lawsuit is: Madison County Circuit Court case number 17-L-644.

Illinois Man Alleges Leukemia from Benzene Exposure

July 10, 2017 – A man from Wood River, Illinois, claims that he developed acute myeloid leukemia due to exposure to benzene from the Wood River Refinery.

According to the lawsuit, Plaintiff Dennis Determan lived near the Wood River Refinery from April 1991 to 2011, during which time he was exposed to benzene and benzene-containing chemicals.

In March 2017, Determan claims he was diagnosed with AML as a result of chronic exposure to benzene via inhalation, ingestion, and/or absorption of benzene being emitted, leaked, spilled, dumped and discharged into the air and surface/ground water by manufacturing plants owned by Rust-Oleum Corporation and Turtle Wax, Inc.

Determan furthermore charges the companies with failure to warn residents near the Wood River Refinery of the health risks associated with proximal benzene exposure, and failure to recall all products containing the chemical.

Plaintiff is requesting a jury trial and seeking damages in excess of $50,000 together with costs expended, and for any further relief the court deems just and proper.

The lawsuit is: Madison County Circuit Court case number 17-L-872.

Auto Mechanic Files Benzene Cancer Lawsuit in Illinois

May 19, 2017 – A lawsuit was recently filed in Cook County, Illinois, by an auto mechanic who claims he developed multiple myeloma after being exposed to benzene for years at his job.

According to the lawsuit, Plaintiff Steven J. Williams was frequently exposed to benzene and/or chlorinated hydrocarbons during his 35 year career as an auto mechanic.

Williams claims that he was diagnosed with multiple myeloma as a result of prolonged exposure to carcinogens in diesel fuel, parts washer solvent, paint, belt dressings and more. Multiple myeloma is a life-threatening form of cancer that begins in the plasma cells of bone marrow.

Several recent benzene exposure lawsuits have resulted in multi-million dollar jury awards. In November 2016, a railroad worker with leukemia was awarded $7.5 million. The worker was exposed to benzene, creosote and solvents on the job, according to the lawsuit.

Williams’ complaint was filed against Ashland Inc., BP Products North America Inc., Hess Corp., Safety-Kleen Systems Inc., The Sherwin-Williams Co., E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., Axalta Coating Systems LLC, CRC Industries Inc., Rust-Oleum Corp., Radiator Specialty Co., Heritage Crystal Clean LLC, Shell Oil Co., ExxonMobil Corp. and Marathon Petroleum Corp.

Plaintiff alleges that the defendants’ products contained benzene, yet their labeling provided no warnings about the potential health risks involved with using them.
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Do I have a Benzene Lawsuit?

The Toxic Tort Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Benzene exposure lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new injury and death cases in all 50 states.

Free Case Evaluation: Again, if you were injured by the side effects of benzene toxicity, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to a settlement by filing a suit and we can help.

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