Washington State Patrol troopers file $1M tort claims

Washington State Patrol troopers file $1M tort claims

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) – Five Washington State Patrol troopers have filed tort claims against the agency, claiming officials knew and didn’t do enough about the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning from faulty exhaust systems in their patrol cars.

KOIN-TV reported Wednesday that lawyer Josephine Townsend filed the $1 million claims, which could lead to future lawsuits.

In July the state Department of Labor and Industries installed carbon monoxide detectors in the vehicles, which were triggered 50 times through the end of August for unsafe exposure to carbon monoxide.

An inspection report says the vehicles were taken to Ford dealerships where workers found exhaust problems that Ford says were related to unsealed holes from police equipment installed by third parties.

A patrol spokeswoman says none of the troopers are forced to drive those specific vehicles and that the agency is working to fix the problem.

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Information from: KOIN-TV, http://www.koin.com/