Family seeks punitive damages for refinery worker's benzene exposure

Kelly Holleran Oct. 12, 2010, 5:53am


The surviving spouse and children of a deceased refinery worker claim the man died after being exposed to benzene products.

Plaintiffs Vida Ruth Price, Barbara Sue Price Snyder, Peggy Diance Price and Michael Allen Price claim their husband and father, Jesse Price, was exposed to benzene and benzene-containing products while working for defendants Atlantic Richfield Co., B.P. Products North America and Total Petrochemicals U.S.A.

Because of his exposure to benzene, Jesse Price developed myelodysplasia and died on March 5, according to the complaint filed Sept. 27 in Jefferson County District Court.

The plaintiffs blame the defendants for causing Jesse Price's death, alleging they allowed employees to work around carcinogenic products, failed to warn of the dangers of the chemicals and failed to take precautions to ensure that the defendants were not exposed to dangerous chemicals.

In their complaint, the plaintiffs are seeking exemplary and punitive damages, plus interest at the legal rate, costs and other relief the court deems just.

J. Keith Hyde and D'Juana Parks of Provost and Umphrey Law Firm in Beaumont will be representing them.

The case has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court.

Jefferson County District Court case number: D188-448

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