Woman blames cancer, fertility issues on gas allegedly emitted by Sterigenics facility

By Jenie Mallari-Torres | Oct 16, 2018

CHICAGO – A woman who resided near the Sterigenics facility in Willowbrook during her childhood alleges a gas emitted by the facility caused her cancer.

Heather Schumacher filed a complaint on Oct. 10 in Cook County Circuit Court against Sterigenics International Inc., alleging negligence and other counts.

According to the complaint, the plaintiff alleges since 1984, the defendants' facility in Willowbrook has emitted ethylene oxide into the air and that the gas is a known carcinogen.

The plaintiff, 39, alleges she lived near the Willowbrook facility from 1978-2002 and was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma in 2007 and also has fertility complications.

The plaintiff alleges the defendants breached their duty by emitting ethylene oxide into the air, failing to warn the community's residents that they were breathing ethylene oxide, failing to apply safe methods to reduce ethylene oxide emissions from its facility, and subjecting plaintiff and those who live and work near its facility to elevated cancer risk.

The plaintiff requests a trial by jury and seeks judgment against defendant, and injunctive relief. She is represented by Antonio M. Romanucci, Bhavani Raveendran, Martin D. Gould and Bryce T. Hensley of Romanucci & Blandin LLC in Chicago and Steven A. Hart, Brian H. Eldridge and Jennifer M. Cascio of Hart McLaughlin & Eldridge LLC in Chicago.

Cook County Circuit Court case number 18-L-11006

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Organizations in this Story

Circuit Court of Cook County Hart McLaughlin & Eldridge, LLC Romanucci & Blandin LLC Sterigenics U.S. L.L.C.

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