Spraying Pesticide in school... Couple sue for damages

BENTONVILLE -- A Rogers couple claims that hazardous pesticides, including Dursban and Safrotin, made a woman sick after Serfco repeatedly sprayed the chemicals in Rogers school buildings, according to a lawsuit.

Rogers attorney Jim Lingle filed the suit on behalf of Martha G. and Gary Milburn. Filed Monday in Benton County Circuit Court, the suit names as defendants the chemical makers, suppliers and applicators Dow Chemical Co., Rofan Services Inc., EPCO Inc., Eli Lilly and Co., DowElanco, ZoeCon Corp., and Serfco Inc. of Fayetteville.

The suit states that, on March 24 and 25, 1993, Serfco applied chemicals and pesticides to Rogers school buildings while Martha Milburn was present.

The applied chemicals include Dursban, which contains the toxic chemical chloropyrifos. The chemicals also included Safrotin, which contains the toxic agent Propetamphos, the suit states.

Safrotin is classified as a restricted-use pesticide, and Safrotin is a neurotoxin that causes long-term ill effects to the human nervous system, the suit states.

Chloropyrifos and Propetamphos are organophosphates that chemically combine with enzymes essential to controlling nerve-impulse transmission, the suit states.

The chemical combination inactivates the nerve-impulse transmission and causes muscle contraction or twitching and sensory and behavior disturbances, according to the suit. The suit alleges that Dow Chemical knew of the ill health effects of the chemicals, and that DowElanco hid complaints about Dursban until November 1994.

After her exposure to the chemicals, Martha Milburn experienced tingling in her hands, feet and around her lips, had difficulty walking, her eyes were out of focus and she was dizzy and nauseous, the suit states.

The lawsuit claims Serfco is negligent because the company chose and combined the chemicals to spray, but it failed to warn of the chemicals' dangers.

Dow and Zoecon are negligent for not using ordinary care in manufacturing Dursban and Safrotin, the suit states.

The Milburns seek a jury trial and ask for unspecified damages to pay for medical bills, loss of earnings and income and loss of property value.

The Milburns filed a similar suit in 1996, but that suit was dismissed after several years for lack of prosecution, according to court records.



[ http://www.nwaonline.net/278944212966683.bsp

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