Benzene suit filed against 13 companies

David Yates Mar. 31, 2011, 6:31am


Lee Bertrand and his wife, Sally, have filed suit against DuPont de Nemours and 12 other companies, alleging the defendants manufactured and sold benzene products which allegedly caused the man's cancer.

The petition was filed March 28 in Jefferson County District Court.

The other defendants named in the suit include CRC Industries, Dow Chemical, Ineos Chlor America, Brance Krachy, Vallen Safety, Able Fastener, McJunkin-Cambar, Wilson Industries, PPG Industries, Exxon-Mobil, ExxonMobil Oil and Mobil Oil.

In his suit, Bertrand says that throughout a period of many years up to the late 1990s, he was employed as an independent contractor at DuPont and ExxonMobil facilities in Beaumont.

During his employment, he alleges he was exposed to benzene products. In August, Bertrand was diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma of the kidney, court records show.

The suit blames the defendants for negligently placing benzene products into the stream of commerce, exposing workers such as Bertrand to carcinogenic compounds.

The plaintiffs are suing for punitive and exemplary damages.

Beaumont attorney Darren Brown of Provost Umphrey represents them.

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

Case No. D189-664

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