Exposure to creosote caused cancer, says railroad worker in suit

Andrea Dearden Dec. 14, 2010, 3:31am

An Edwardsville man diagnosed with leukemia accuses his former employer of allowing conditions that allegedly caused him to contract the disease.

James Brown filed a lawsuit against Union Pacific Railroad Company Dec. 3 in Madison County Circuit Court. Brown argues his cancer is the result of extended exposure to toxic chemicals while working for the railroad.

According to the complaint, Brown has worked for Union Pacific as an equipment operator for the last decade. During that time he was allegedly exposed to various toxic substances including creosote, degreasing solvents and lead.

Brown says he was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in August 2008 – a condition his doctor allegedly said was related to Brown's work at the railroad.

Brown accuses Union Pacific of negligence for failing to provide a safe workplace. He is asking for more than $50,000 to compensate for pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages and court costs.

Attorney David N. Damick of St. Louis is representing Brown. They request a jury trial.

Madison County Circuit Court case no. 10-L-1213

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Union Pacific
1400 Douglas St
Omaha, NE 68179

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