Owens and Castrol targeted by sick employee

Steve Gonzalez Aug. 1, 2005, 11:00am

An employee of Owens Brockway Glass Container in Godfrey filed a 12-count, $600,000 suit against his employer and Castrol Inc. Aug. 1 in Madison County Circuit Court.

William Laird, a machinist at Owens since June of 1992, alleges he suffers from respiratory illness and skin problems after breathing Syntilo 9918--which is manufactured by Castrol.

Laird is represented by Ted Gianaris of SimmonsCooper in East Alton.

“Plaintiff developed severe and chronic respiratory difficulties (including) shortness of breath, chronic and persistent cough, inability to breathe normally, asthma, skin lesions, nasal passage irritation and lesions, anxiety and depression,” according to the complaint.

The suit alleges negligence, strict liability, willful and wanton misconduct and breach of warranty.

It also includes a count of battery against Owens.

“The defendant intended to cause the plaintiff to be touched by the liquid containing Syntilo 9918,” the suit claims.

According to the complaint, exposure to metal working fluids (MWFs) poses an increased risk of cancer of the lungs, esophagus, skin, stomach, pancreas, larynx, colon, rectum and other organs.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Nicholas Byron.

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