WHEELING – District Judge John Preston Bailey denied Ball Corporation and Ball Metal Food Container LLC’s partial motion to dismiss in a lawsuit alleging an employee sustained hand injuries at work.

The issue of whether Ball Corporation is also entitled to invoke workers’ compensation employer immunity cannot possibly be decided at this juncture, according to the March 29 order.

“Instead, this issue is better decided closer to trial after evidence on the issue has been developed through discovery,” the order states.

As an additional matter, the court notes that even if it were to look outside of the contents of Randy Urso’s complaint, the Ball defendants’ filings in the matter only complicate and do not clarify the relationship between Ball Metal Food and Ball Corporation

“As such, while Ball Corporation and Ball metal Food repeatedly refer to themselves collectively as ‘the Ball defendants’ in their motion to dismiss, their representation of their relationship is both confusing and contradictory,” the order states.

The motion to partially dismiss was denied with respect to Ball Corporation and denied as moot with respect to Ball Metal Food Container LLC.

Ball Corporation; Ball Metal Food Container LLC; Coil Systems of Illinois Inc.; Littell LLC; Littell Sales & Marketing Inc.; and 1211 Tower Road Inc. were all named as defendants in the suit.

Urso was a coil line operator for Ball and worked in its Weirton facility, according to a complaint filed Nov. 16 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia.

Urso claims on Feb. 9, 2014, he was performing his job duties when he sustained massive injuries due to the defendants’ negligence when his right hand was pulled into a non-guarded Little Straightener Roller.

The defendants failed to provide Urso with a safe place in which to work; failed to provide him with tools, implements and equipment that were safe, properly designed and in good working order; failed to properly train him; and violated federal and state safety regulations and laws, according to the suit.

Urso sustained pain and suffering; loss of income; medical expenses; impairment of earning capacity; permanent disfigurement and scarring; and loss of enjoyment of life.

Urso is seeking compensatory and punitive damages with pre- and post-judgment interest. He is being represented by Patrick Maroney of Maroney, Williams, Weaver & Pancake PLLC.

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia case number: 5:15-cv-00144

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