EDWARDSVILLE — The estate of a Roxana woman has filed suit against several oil refineries, claiming they created a plume of gasoline under nearby communities and caused residents to inhale toxic benzene fumes.
James D. Stanton, on behalf of Patricia Jordan, has named Shell Oil Co., BP Products, ConocoPhillips, Premcor, Apex and other past operators of oil refineries in the suit, the Alton Telegraph reported. Jordan lived for several years in the 400 block of Central Avenue in Roxana, a village southeast of Alton and about 25 miles north of St. Louis.
Jordan died Oct. 17, 2017, of acute myeloid leukemia, which is allegedly caused by benzene, a component of gasoline.
The suit states that Jordan lived in Roxana from 1973 to 1989 and also lived in nearby Wood River and Rosewood Heights. It states she lived near one of the refineries and kept her windows open for ventilation, and that she also spent a substantial time outdoors.
Filed Sept. 26, the suit claims the refineries operated pipelines that leaked. The leaking gasoline seeped into the soil and the groundwater beneath nearby communities, it claims.
The Jordan suit is one of several that has arisen from the alleged pipeline leak. As recently as 2016, Apex — the former owner of an oil refinery — was ordered to pay $10 million toward environmental cleanup efforts.
Former Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan previously said residents of the communities have faced health hazards, safety risks and property loss because of contamination over decades.
Pipeline leaks, for one, created an underground plume of gasoline and other petroleum byproducts.
The Jordan estate is represented by the Perica Law Firm of Wood River, the Saville Law Firm of St. Louis and the Dysart Law Firm of Chesterfield.