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Willowbrook ethylene oxide exposure attorneyIn the United States, we expect to be safe and free from harm as we go about our daily lives. While we may be aware of the risks we face in our daily activities and take steps to protect ourselves from personal injuries, there are times when we are put at risk due to the negligence of others without even being aware of the danger. This was illustrated recently when the news broke that residents of Willowbrook, Illinois have been exposed to toxic chemicals for years, putting them at increased risk of contracting cancer. 

Decades of Ethylene Oxide Emissions

In August 2018, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry released a report which raised the alarm that people in Willowbrook and nearby communities such as Burr Ridge have been exposed to ethylene oxide, a carcinogenic chemical. A plant operated by Sterigenics International, a company that sterilizes medical equipment, food products, and pharmaceutical drugs, was found to be emitting the toxic chemical, and the report concluded that people in the area have an elevated cancer risk and that the emissions constituted a public health hazard.

While Sterigenics took steps to reduce ethylene oxide emissions from their Willowbrook plant in July 2018, this does nothing to address the potential damages caused to Willowbrook residents by years of exposure. Around 20,000 people live in the area surrounding the plant, which has been operating since 1984, and there are four schools and one day care center within one mile of the facility.

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Chicago bus accident attorneyBuses operated by the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) are a common sight on the city's roads, but while these vehicles provide an essential service, they also create serious risks for drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians. The huge difference in size and weight between buses and cars can result in serious injuries for those involved in a CTA bus accident, and people who have been injured should understand their options for pursuing compensation for their damages.

CTA Bus Accident Statistics

While we expect the CTA to operate its vehicles safely and protect passengers, drivers, and others who use the road, the sobering reality is that CTA buses are regularly involved in motor vehicle collisions. In fact, a 2015 investigation by ABC7 News found that buses are involved in an average of one accident every 36 hours. In addition, a 2017 investigation by the Chicago Sun-Times found that over the previous two years, there were more than 500 CTA bus accidents which resulted in more than 1,000 injuries, five deaths, and a cost to taxpayers of $16 million.

The Personal Impact of Bus Accidents

While the statistics about bus accidents in Chicago can be shocking, it is important to remember that they are not just numbers. Each of these incidents represents someone whose life was drastically affected by a motor vehicle collision. At Winters Salzetta O'Brien & Richardson, LLC, we fight for the rights of those who have been harmed by the negligence of bus drivers or the CTA.

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