June 21, 2021- The Collins Law Firm, P.C. has filed a Class Action lawsuit against Chemtool Incorporated for the explosion that occurred at their Rockton, Illinois plant on June 14, 2021. The explosion resulted in an enormous chemical fire that created a massive plume of toxic smoke, ash, and debris that could be seen from 100 miles away. Eighty-nine fire departments were dispatched to the site to aid in combating the fire.
As a result of the fire, the Winnebago County authorities issued an executive proclamation of disaster emergency and ordered a mandatory evacuation of residents living within a one-mile radius of the plant. The affected residents were directed not to return home even for medication, technology and communication devices, or other personal items.
Authorities also advised residents within three miles of the plant to wear masks for protection against the potentially toxic and harmful chemicals released by the fire, and to remain indoors without using their air conditioning. Residents were further warned not to touch any of the debris on their property but to have it removed by professionals with experience working with hazardous materials.
The lawsuit seeks damages for nuisance, trespass, and the loss of use and enjoyment of their homes. The plaintiffs allege that Chemtool was negligent and failed to exercise the reasonable care that would have prevented the explosion, fire, and smoke, and dust plume that inundated the community.
"We look forward to representing the residents and business owners who have been severely impacted by the explosion at the Chemtool plant and hope to recover for them everything that they have lost as a result of this disaster." said attorney Ed Manzke. The residents will be represented by Mr. Manzke and attorney Shawn Collins of The Collins Law Firm.
About The Collins Law Firm: The Collins Law Firm represents families against polluters throughout the United States, fighting for clean air, soil and water, and compensation for injury to property and health caused by dangerous chemicals dumped and spilled into the environment. For more information on The Collins Law Firm please visit: Collins Law.
Naperville Attorney Shawn Collins Honored by Best Lawyers in America©
Naperville (September 10, 2020) - The Collins Law Firm is proud to announce that senior partner Shawn Collins has been included in the 2021 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America© in recognition of his nationwide work in environmental litigation. Best Lawyers lists are compiled annually following exhaustive peer-review evaluations. This year’s list highlights the top 6% of private practicing attorneys in the country based on more than 8 million votes.
“I am honored to be recognized for my work fighting for justice for communities and individuals harmed by toxic chemicals,” said Shawn Collins.
The Best Lawyers in America© are nominated and reviewed by their peers based on their professional accomplishments. Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence, and inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a significant honor in the legal profession.
Shawn Collins is the senior partner and founder of The Collins Law Firm which has been a premier environmental litigation, personal injury, and commercial litigation firm in Naperville, IL since 1992. For more information about The Collins Law Firm, please visit www.collinslaw.com.600 New Personal Injury Lawsuits Filed Against Sterigenics: The Collins Law Firm Files on Behalf of 55 of the New Plaintiffs
August 2020 - The Collins Law Firm has filed additional lawsuits against Sterigenics on behalf of 55 plaintiffs who believe their breast and blood cancers were caused by the company’s toxic emissions. These new cases are in addition to the lawsuits we filed earlier on behalf of 26 similarly affected plaintiffs. Highlighting the scope and seriousness of the problem, our firm and the other law firms representing the victims of Sterigenics’ ethylene oxide contamination, filed a total of more than 600 new lawsuits against the company responsible for emitting an airborne carcinogen into the community for decades.
The lawsuits, filed in Cook County, allege that Sterigenics’ ethylene oxide emissions caused the breast cancers, leukemias, lymphomas, and other blood cancers that have devastated or killed hundreds of innocent people in the Willowbrook area. They were filed on behalf of plaintiffs who lived or worked near the Sterigenics medical sterilization facility.
The lawsuits also include a new defendant, Griffith Foods, which operated the sterilization plant in the late 1980s and 1990s. According to the lawsuits, the food supplier also bears responsibility for the ethylene oxide emissions which sickened so many.
“We are firmly committed to securing justice for those whose lives have been forever changed by the egregious behavior of Sterigenics and the other defendants. Their sheer disregard for human lives is staggering, clearly and repeatedly choosing profits over people,” said Shawn Collins of The Collins Law Firm.
The Collins Law Firm is on the court-appointed Executive Committee for the legal group suing Sterigenics. That committee also includes Romanucci & Blandin, LLC; Salvi Schostock & Pritchard, P.C.; Miner Barnhill & Galland, P.C.; Smith LaCien, LLP; Hart McLaughlin & Eldridge, LLC; Clifford Law Offices; and Tomasik Kotin & Kasserman, LLC.
The Collins Law Firm and the other firms are determined to hold Sterigenics and Griffith Foods accountable for endangering the health and lives of the people of Willowbrook and the surrounding communities.
With the addition of these new cases, the total number of individual lawsuits pending against Sterigenics is now more than 700.
For more news coverage of the filings:
The Collins Law Firm is pleased to announce that four attorneys at the firm have been named to the Super Lawyers list this year. Attorneys Shawn Collins, Edward Manzke, and John Sopuch have been named as 2020 Super Lawyers, and attorney John Risvold has been named a 2020 Rising Star. Only 5% of lawyers in Illinois are recognized by Super Lawyers for their professional achievement. We congratulate our attorneys on this recognition of their dedication and hard work:
Shawn Collins A graduate of the University of Notre Dame and the University of Chicago Law School, Shawn represents environmental and business clients in complex litigation throughout Illinois and the country. His environmental cases, brought on behalf of families and communities fighting corporate polluters, have set precedents and helped The Collins Law Firm become a nationally recognized environmental litigation firm. He has been on the "Super Lawyers" list eleven times.
Edward Manzke represents personal injury, medical malpractice, and wrongful death clients all over Illinois. He earned both his bachelor's degree and his law degree from the University of Illinois. Since becoming a lawyer in 1992, Ed has won verdicts and settlements for his clients totaling over $100 million. Ed has been selected as a "Super Lawyer" fourteen times since 2006.
John Risvold represents victims and families in Illinois in personal injury, medical malpractice, and wrongful death cases. John earned his bachelor's degree and his law degree from the University of Missouri, graduating from the law school with the prestigious Order of Barristers. He has been a Super Lawyers Rising Star four times.
John Sopuch III A graduate of the University of Texas and Pepperdine Law School in California, John serves Of Counsel at The Collins Law Firm and represents clients in business litigation and commercial dispute resolution. He has been a Super Lawyer since 2018.
The Collins Law Firm is one of the nation's premier sources of legal representation for victims of negligent, reckless and malicious acts. Founder Shawn Collins has represented victims of groundwater contamination, air pollution and vapor intrusion, recovering more than $100 million for injured clients. The firm is known for its experience, resources and knowledge of complex scientific issues at the heart of environmental contamination cases, and through litigation forces polluters to clean up toxic environmental pollution, provide safe drinking water, prevent dangerous chemical vapors from invading homes and excavate contaminated soil.