Roxana, Wood River resident sues refineries, alleges cancer from exposure to toxic chemicals

Justin Sandbach, a former resident of Roxana and Wood River, is suing local oil refineries, alleging he developed cancer from exposure to toxic chemicals released into the community by the defendants.

Sandbach filed a complaint July 16 in the Madison County Circuit Court against Shell Oil Company, individually and as successor to Shell Oil Company Incorporated, Shell Chemical LP frequently known as Shell Chemical Company and Shell Oil Products Company, BP Products North America Inc., ConoCoPhillips Company, Phillips 66 Company and The Premcor Refining Group Inc., Turtle Wax Inc., and others, alleging negligence.

According to his complaint, Sandbach was born and raised in various locations within Madison County, including the City of Roxana and the City of Wood River. He alleges he attended the schools and used community facilities located in and around the areas, which are in close proximity to the defendant oil companies’ refineries. Sandbach claims that while living in the area from 1989 through 2010 he was exposed to toxic chemicals, including benzene products, materials, gases and fumes that were released into the air, soil and groundwater in the adjoining neighborhoods and community. Sandbach also alleges he was exposed to benzene from using the defendant’s Turtle Wax product.

Sandbach claims his exposure to the defendants’ toxic chemicals caused him to develop Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. As a result, he has had to undergo chemotherapy and other medical treatments. He claims several others who lived and went to school in the same area developed similar types of cancer and that the defendants “had actual knowledge” that exposure to these chemicals were a health risk.

Sandbach seeks compensation of more than $50,000, plus interest and all other just relief.

This article was first published in Madison Record.

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