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Personal Injury - Verdict in favor of Plaintiff in the amount of US$10,875,622

Case Name:Andrzej Plizga and Katarzyna Plizga v. The Euclid Chemical Company
Case Number:10 L 14488
Verdict Date:2015-04-22
Outcome TypeJury Verdict
Court:Plaintiffs strict product liability action against the concrete sealer at issue, \"Crystal Clear VOC,\" which was manufactured by defendant Euclid Chemical Company was unreasonably dangerous in its design and inadequate warning labeling. Specificallly, p
Incident Date:

Plaintiff's Complaint:
Plaintiffs strict product liability action against the concrete sealer at issue, \"Crystal Clear VOC,\" which was manufactured by defendant Euclid Chemical Company was unreasonably dangerous in its design and inadequate warning labeling. Specificallly, plaintiffs alleged the sealer was formulated too flammable for indoor, household use, and also was labeled in violation of The Federal Hazardous Substances Act and equivalent Illinois law.

Injury, Damage, or Loss:
Mr. Plizga was using Crystal Clear VOC to seal his home\'s basement floor when, unbeknownst to him the vapors of the sealer migrated to a nearby utility room and were ignited by the pilot light inside his home\'s water heater, causing a massive explosion.\n\nMr. Plizga sustained burns (mostly 2nd and 3rd-degree) to approximately 65% of his body, although he did not sustain any facial burns. The burns were mostly to his hands, arms, legs and torso. He required several skin graft surgeries. His medical bills were $1 million, but there was no claim for future medical treatment or expenses, nor was there any life care plan.\n\nPlaintiffs also claimed that Mr. Plizga, who was 36-years old and aa union bricklayer at the time, is now unable to return to work.

Defendant's Wrongdoing:
Plaintiffs alleged that defendant chose to use acetone in the formula for Crystal Clear VOC, as opposed to safer alternative solvents, based on a profit incentive at the expense of public safety.\n\nPlaintiffs also proved that the warning label, while containing a substantial amount of cautionary language (such as \"Keep away from ignition sources,\" \"WARNING! FLAMMABLE.,\" and \"Vapors may cause flash fire\'\"), failed to comply with the labeling requirements of The Federal Hazardous Substances Act and the equivalent law in Illinois, the Uniform Hazardous Substances Act of Illinois. Plaintiffs also proved the warning label conflicted with industry standards found in the National Paint & Coatings Association Labeling Guide. \n\nFurther, plaintiffs introduced evidence from the Consumer Product Safety Commission showing that consumers are generally unaware that their home\'s water heater can potentially ignite flammable liquid vapors, whereas chemical manufactures have long known of this hazard, and therefore should have taken design/warnings measures to protect the public.

Plaintiff's Attorneys:
Matthew Passen (member of 40 under 40) & Stephen Passen\nPassen Law Group\nOne East Wacker Dr., Suite 1750\nChicago, IL 60601\nT: 312-527-4500 F: 312-527-4435\nmpassen@passenlaw.com\nRepresenting Mr. and Mrs. Plizga

Defendant's Attorneys:
John Ouska and Amy Kunzer of Patton & Ryan\n330 N. Wabash, Suite 3800\nChicago, Illinois 60611\nTelephone: (312) 261-5160\nRepresented The Euclid Chemical Company

Judge/Arbitrator/Mediator:
Trial judge: The Honorable Judge Lorna E. Propes, Circuit Court of Cook County\nDaley Center\n50 W. Washington St., Rm. 1606\nChicago, Illinois 60602 \n(312) 603-4829

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Published on Oct-15-15


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