(WLNS) – After a man who lives right next to the Kalamazoo River got sick when the Enbridge oil spill happened, he sought out to sue the company.
A lower court tossed the case out and said there was no direct link between the Enbridge spill and the man’s health.
The man got sick when the oil spill happened. He ended up coughing and throwing up so much that he says he suffered an avulsion of his short gastric artery that led to internal bleeding.
Since he was never formally examined by a doctor, the lower court dismissed the case.
Now an appeals court says a jury should decide whether Enbridge is responsible for the man falling ill.
However, the dissenting judge believes the jury won’t be able to decide fairly because he feels they would not be familiar with vascular injuries.
The dissenting judge says: “I cannot agree with the majority’s conclusion that expert testimony was not required to prove causation in this case. Plaintiff’s theory of causation was attenuated. It required both (1) proof that the fumes from the oil spill caused plaintiff’s vomiting, and (2) proof that plaintiff’s vomiting caused his resulting vascular injury. In my opinion, whether the fumes released by the oil spill caused plaintiff’s vomiting, and whether plaintiff’s vomiting in turn caused his abdominal artery to rupture, are not matters within the common understanding of average jurors.
6 News will provide updates to this story as they are available.