Georgia Family Files Benzene Lawsuit After Son’s Leukemia Diagnosis
The lawsuit, which names Chevron, BP, Gulf Oil, Colonial Pipeline Co. and several other companies alleges that benzene exposure directly contributed to their son’s condition.
According to court documents, Jeffrey McElheney filed the claim in Clarke County Superior Court. The suit alleges that the named defendants discharged toxic chemicals, including benzene, from Athens-area facilities and that these chemicals eventually found their way into groundwater.
Mr. McElheney claims that the contaminated groundwater fed into a drinking well located at Oakwood Mobile Home Park, where he and his wife were living when their son, Jarrett, was conceived. The couple moved into the mobile home park in May of 1992 and their son was born in October 1994. The family continued to live in the park until late 1998 and moved shortly after the boy was diagnosed with leukemia.
Located near the mobile home park were a group of large storage tanks that connected to a system of petroleum pipelines. The pipelines are used to transfer gasoline and other products so that they may be moved onto tanker trucks and then distributed to retail suppliers. The lawsuit alleges that benzene and other chemicals were allowed to contaminate the groundwater through a series of pipeline leaks and accidental discharges. They believe that benzene exposure ultimately caused their young son to develop leukemia.
While doctors were able to treat his condition successfully, his parents say he will continue suffer long-term effects of the leukemia and he is at an increased risk for relapse or developing other forms of cancer. The family is seeking compensation for past and future medical care costs, litigation expenses and an unspecified amount of punitive damages.
The majority of the named defendants have yet to respond to the lawsuit. One company, Transmontaigne Product Services, has filed an answer stating they committed no wrongdoing.
While the victim in this case has successfully recovered from his illness, he may face additional health problems. Benzene exposure has been linked to a number of serious and in some cases, fatal conditions, including Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma (NHL), Multiple Myeloma (MM), Aplastic Anemia, Myelodyspastic Syndrome (MDS) and Hematologic Cancers. Exposure to benzene can occur through indirect contact or by working in certain industries, such as petroleum processing, pesticide production or tire manufacturing.
If you or a loved one developed leukemia, lymphoma or another serious health problem that you believe was caused by benzene exposure, you need to contact an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your rights. The law firm of Nadrich & Cohen LLP is available to assist benzene exposure victims in all 50 states in proving their injury claim.
Contact our Injury Hotline today at 1-800-722-0765 to schedule your free initial case evaluation. You can also complete a confidential online contact form by visiting our Benzene Exposure Resource Site. Don’t hesitate to contact us today to get the experienced legal representation you need.