Volume 41, Issue 6 - June 2006


Mother Sues Bowling Alley After Daughter Falls Through Window
On September 4, 2004, Crystal Howland allegedly tripped on a raised area and fell through a plate glass window at AMF Bowland Lanes in Granite City, Ill. According to a report in the Madison County Record of Madison County, Ill., she claims to have suffered serious injuries after tripping. Her mother, Lonnette Howland, has since filed suit against the bowling center seeking damages in excess of $100,000. The Record reported that Howland claims the bowling ally failed to exercise reasonable care in keeping its property in a safe condition and free from potential tripping hazards. 

She also claims the entrance condition was one in which the company knew or should have known existed, and that the bowling center negligently failed to exercise reasonable care by not placing a sign, painted stripe or other means of suitable protection in the area where her daughter fell and where other customers enter and exit the bowling center. She claims the bowling center failed to provide a safer entranceway with railings around the area in question and failed to provide a safer glass product to prevent shattering.

Howland says her daughter sustained severe and permanent injuries, including injuries to her abdomen and other areas of her body, causing her to suffer “great physical pain and mental anguish” and leaving her unable to perform usual activities.

She also is seeking damages under the Family Expense Act claiming her daughter’s injuries caused her to sustain great losses in the form of medical expenses.

AMF Bowland Lanes was contacted for comment, but declined to respond.

Ferro, TherMark and CerLase Reach Accord

Ferro Corp. of Cleveland, TherMark LLC of Los Angeles, and CerLase of Limoges, France, have settled a long-standing dispute over the use of patented laser marking technology for ceramics, glass and metals.

In addition to settling their legal claims, the firms completed a cross-licensing agreement that allows all three parties to practice and promote laser marking technology under the applicable patents.

TherMark and Ferro had previously reached an accord with a license agreement in 2004 and this agreement includes CerLase, which also held intellectual property in laser marking technology. Several years ago all three companies developed materials and processes designed to enhance or enable lasers to make high-contrast permanent marks on a variety of surfaces.

The new agreement gives Ferro, TherMark and CerLase the ability to market each others products, processes and equipment, without triggering issues concerning patent infringement. Ferro will be the sole and exclusive supplier of TherMark and CerLase materials to worldwide markets, except for certain limited pre-existing licensing agreements. TherMark continues as an authorized distributor of Ferro laser marking materials. 

EPA Cites Local PPG Plant for Clean Air Violations
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has cited PPG Industries’ Barberton, Ohio, chemical manufacturing plant for alleged clean-air violations.

In a preliminary finding of violation, the federal agency said the company failed to comply with a 1-pound-per-hour permitted emission limit on volatile organic compounds from the plant’s air stripper.

Tests done last January and February at the EPA’s request showed VOC emissions as high as 8.8 pounds per hour, nearly nine times the permitted rate.

The EPA says it may issue a compliance order, assess an administrative penalty or bring suit against the company.
Plant manager Rich Bauer said the company intends to meet soon with the EPA to resolve the matter. 

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