HUNTINGTON -- A former employee is suing Flamos Enterprises after she was injured on the job.

ABR Services Inc. was also named as a defendant in the suit.

On July 16, 2009, Chad Melson was instructed by the defendants to perform power washing work at Marathon's Tank Farm in Kenova, according to a complaint filed Oct. 20 in Cabell Circuit Court.

Melson claims two employees were attempting to start the power washer's combustion engine by pouring gasoline directly into the engine's carburetor while at the same time, turning the starter key, which caused an explosion that engulfed his upper body in flames.

As a result of the explosion, Melson sustained burns to approximately 15 percent of his body; third degree burns to his hands, wrists, chest and neck; second degree burns to his face and ears; severe, permanent, disabling and disfiguring injuries; nerve damages; scar contractures; post-traumatic stress disorder; and physical and mental pain and suffering, according to the suit.

The defendants violated West Virginia Code by allowing the unsafe working conditions to exist, according to the suit.

Melson is seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. He is being represented by Robert B. Warner and William B. Hicks.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge F. Jane Hustead.

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 10-C-760

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