Son sues railroad over father's lung disease death

Kelly Holleran Oct. 28, 2008, 8:28am

A former Illinois Central Railroad Company employee's son has filed suit on behalf of his recently deceased father, claiming he died from a lung disease he contracted while working for the company.

Donald Hamilton claims his father, Raymond Hamilton, was diagnosed with lung cancer and asbestosis after inhaling asbestos fibers, free silica, diesel fumes, solvent fumes, gasoline fumes, fibrogenic materials and carcinogenic materials while working for the railroad.

"This occupational injury resulted in Plaintiff's death on November 9, 2005," the complaint filed Oct. 23 in Madison County Circuit Court states.

Until his death, Raymond suffered great physical pain, suffering, inconvenience and nervous and emotional tension and anxiety, the suit states.

Donald claims his father was also exposed to a significantly greater risk of developing cancer, was limited in his normal activities, suffered financial losses, incurred substantial medical costs and that his general health, strength and vitality had been impaired.

In addition, Raymond suffered a loss of the enjoyment of life's pleasures, according to the complaint.

Donald claims Illinois Central Railroad was negligent because it failed to provide Raymond with a safe place to work, failed to provide Raymond with safe work methods, failed to supply reasonably safe equipment or sufficient help, failed to warn Raymond of the risks associated with his job or of the risk of asbestos exposure and required Raymond to be exposed to dangerous levels of asbestos.

In addition, Illinois Central Railroad negligently failed to monitor asbestos levels in Raymond's job duty, failed to employ safe work practices, failed to enforce rules regarding the avoidance of asbestos exposure and failed to eliminate jobs to minimize the levels of asbestos exposure, according to the complaint.

Donald is seeking unspecified damages.

He is represented by Daniel R. Francis of Francis Law Firm in St. Louis.

Madison County Circuit Court case number: 08-L-992.

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