• Troopers file lawsuit against Washington State Patrol over carbon monoxide poisoning

    By: KIRO 7 News Staff

    Updated:

    Several Washington State Patrol troopers are suing the Washington State Patrol as well as the Ford Motor Company as part of a class-action lawsuit over carbon monoxide poisoning.

    >> Trooper says Washington State Patrol car made him deathly ill

    The troopers claim they got sick while driving the patrol's Ford Explorer police SUVs. One class action lawsuit filed against Ford by six troopers Wednesday said the SUVs have a defect that allows exhaust fumes to get inside the passenger compartment.

    Then overnight, five troopers filed another lawsuit against the Washington State Patrol.

    That lawsuit said the exhaust leak was not coming from aftermarket changes made to the SUVs, but instead, from cracks in warped exhaust pipes and other parts.

    It also accuses WSP of knowing about the problem but not doing anything about it and ordering troopers to keep driving the vehicles.

    It said in come cases, troopers were told to just "drive with your windows down." 

    Some troopers say they've suffered permanent damage.

    Randall Cashatt, one of the first troopers to come forward with allegations in August 2017, said he remembered "thinking I was going to die."

    >> Ford offers repairs to address Explorer exhaust gas concerns

    KIRO 7 spoke to Cashatt's wife in 2017 after the trooper got sick. She said her husband was coming home from work after a shift, when all of a sudden he was struggling ot stay conscious.

    "He called me about 10:30 and was on his way home, not feeling good. By the time I got to the ER, they had given him a drug to calm him down because he was shaking so bad," said Robin Cashatt.

    The lawsuit against WSP also says an Occupational Safety and Heath Administration investigation showed troopers "relied on inadequate home CO alarms to gauge their exposure," and didn't even know when they were being exposed. 

    It says about 50 troopers in the state reported signs and symptoms of exposure.

    See the complaint filed against Ford and the complaint filed against the Washington State Patrol in Clark County Superior Court. 


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