Lawsuit filed in farming electrocution near Tampico, Ill.

August 5, 2011

Online Staff Report

Late Aug. 4, the father of Hannah Kendall, 14, who was electrocuted while de-tassling corn on a farm in rural northern Illinois July 25, filed a lawsuit on her behalf contending negligence by The Monsanto Company and other defendants that resulted in her death.

July 25, Hannah Kendall was performing work in a cornfield on Luther Road, just south of Stars Road near Tampico, Ill., owned by Donald and Virginia Matthews when she suffered a severe electrical shock that resulted in her death.

The Monsanto Company owned and leased the cornfield for the production of seed corn and retained independent contractors, including Hannah Kendall, to perform de-tassling of seed corn in the cornfields.

In his complaint, Brian Kendall contends the Monsanto Company and other defendants knew of electrical hazards present in the field where the contractors were deployed to work.

“The death of Hannah Kendall was absolutely preventable,” alleged one of Brian Kendall’s attorneys, Devon C. Bruce of Power Rogers & Smith, P.C. “She should have never been allowed to work in that field when there were known electrical hazards present.

Another of Brian Kendall’s attorneys, Todd Smith, added, “Young kids, nor anyone else for that matter, simply are not supposed to encounter this type of hazard de-tassling corn.”

Other defendants in the lawsuit include R & J Enterprises, Commonwealth Edison, Donald & Virginia Matthews and Kevin Larkey.

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