CLARKSBURG -– A Braxton County woman has filed suit against CSX Corporation, alleging her husband died from cancer after he was exposed to the carcinogen creosote throughout his career for the company.
Betty Jo Davis claims her husband, Victor C. Davis, died on May 31, 2007, after fighting a battle against thymic cancer.
According to the complaint filed May 5 in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia, Victor C. Davis developed cancer after his work as a machine operator and trackman from 1975 until 2006 for CSX. During his career, Victor C. Davis was exposed to creosote, which causes cancer, the suit states.
Before his death, Victor C. Davis experienced great pain, suffering, inconvenience, embarrassment, mental anguish and emotional and psychological drama; sustained lost earnings; and lost his ability to enjoy life, the complaint says.
After Victor C. Davis' death, his wife and two children incurred substantial burial and funeral costs; were deprived of his financial support, contributions and benefits; and lost his society, comfort, friendship, guidance, love and affection, Betty Jo Davis claims.
According to the complaint, CSX was guilty of a number of negligent acts, including its failure to provide Victor C. Davis with a safe workplace, its failure to timely provide him with equipment to limit his exposure to creosote, its failure to provide him with safe places to breathe and inhale, its failure to maintain the air and ventilation system where he worked, its failure to periodically test employees for physical effects of the exposure to creosote, its failure to take appropriate action regarding the conditions of the air, its failure to warn Victor C. Davis of the dangers of working around creosote, its requiring employees to be exposed to unsafe levels of creosote when it knew of the dangers and its failure to inspect the occupational exposure to creosote that Victor C. Davis experienced while working.
In her two-count complaint, Betty Jo Davis is seeking an unspecified judgment, plus court costs, interest and other relief the court deems just.
She will be represented by Peter D. Friday of Friday, Porta, Cox and Ward in Pittsburgh.
U.S. District Court case number: 1:10-cv-74