United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
W. DARRAH United States District Court Judge
October 16, 2015, Defendants Roadway Express, Inc.
(“Roadway”) and YRC Worldwide Inc.
(“YRC”) removed an Amended Complaint from the
Circuit Court of Cook County to federal court. In the Amended
Complaint, Plaintiff Village of Sauk Village alleged
trespass, nuisance, and negligence arising from water
pollution allegedly cause by releases of chlorinated solvents
in the water, land, and air of Sauk Village
(“Village”). The Amended Complaint alleged three
counts against Defendants Roadway and YRC: negligence, in
Count I; trespass, in Count IV; and nuisance, in Count VI.
Defendants have filed a Motion for Summary Judgment .
Defendants' Motion  is denied.
Rule 56.1(a)(3) requires the moving party to provide “a
statement of material facts as to which the party contends
there is no genuine issue for trial.” Ammons v.
Aramark Uniform Servs., 368 F.3d 809, 817 (7th Cir.
2004). Local Rule 56.1(b)(3) requires the nonmoving party to
admit or deny every factual statement proffered by the moving
party and to concisely designate any material facts that
establish a genuine dispute for trial. See Schrott v.
Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., 403 F.3d 940, 944 (7th Cir.
2005). A nonmovant's “mere disagreement with the
movant's asserted facts is inadequate if made without
reference to specific supporting material.” Smith
v. Lamz, 321 F.3d 680, 683 (7th Cir. 2003). In the case
of any disagreement, the nonmoving party must reference
affidavits, parts of the record, and other materials that
support his stance. Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(B). To the extent
that a response to a statement of material fact provides only
extraneous or argumentative information, this response will
not constitute a proper denial of the fact, and the fact is
admitted. See Graziano v. Vill. of Oak Park, 401
F.Supp.2d 918, 936 (N.D. Ill. 2005). Similarly, to the extent
that a statement of fact contains a legal conclusion or
otherwise unsupported statement, including a fact that relies
upon inadmissible hearsay, such a fact is disregarded.
Eisenstadt v. Centel Corp., 113 F.3d 738, 742 (7th Cir.
1997). Pursuant to Local Rule 56.1(b)(3)(C), the nonmovant
may submit additional statements of material facts that
“require the denial of summary judgment.”
following facts are taken from the parties' statements of
undisputed material facts submitted in accordance with Local
Village of Sauk Village is a municipality incorporated under
the laws of Illinois and located in Cook and Will Counties.
(PSOF ¶ 1.) Defendant Roadway Express, Inc.
(“Roadway”) is an Ohio corporation. (Id.
¶ 2.) In October 2008, Yellow Transportation, Inc.
merged into Roadway; and the surviving entity was named YRC,
Inc., which does business as YRC Freight. (Id.)
Prior to the merger, Roadway was organized under the laws of
Delaware. (Id.) YRC Worldwide, Inc.
(“YRC”) is a Delaware corporation with its
principal place of business in Kansas. (Id. ¶
3.) YRC owns a trucking terminal located in Chicago Heights,
Illinois (the “YRC Terminal”). (Id.) The
YRC Terminal conducts freight terminal operations, where
shipments are offloaded and then loaded onto new trucks.
(Id. ¶ 45.)
owns and operates a public water supply which consists of
three wells: Wells 1, 2, and 3. (Id. ¶6.) The
water from Plaintiff's wells is treated at two water
treatment plants: one that treats the water from Wells 1 and
2, and one that treats the water from Well 3. (Id.
¶ 7.) Well 3 is adjacent to, and on the northern
boundary of, the YRC Terminal. (Id. ¶ 8.) Wells
1 and 2 are approximately twenty feet apart from each other
and located about one mile south of Well 3. (Id.
¶ 9.) The YRC Terminal is located outside of the capture
zones for Wells 1 and 2. (Id. ¶ 46.)
Plaintiff's community well pulls water from a dolomite
bedrock aquifer. (Id. ¶ 11.) The top of the
aquifer ranges from fifty to one-hundred feet below the
2-dichloroethylene (“DCE”) and vinyl chloride are
degradation compounds of the chlorinated solvents
tetrachloroethene (“PCE”) and trichloroethylene
(“TCE”). (Id. ¶ 16.) PCE and TCE
break down into vinyl chloride in certain environments.
(Id. ¶ 17.) Once a chlorinated solvent such as
TCE, PCE, DCE, and vinyl chloride reaches groundwater, it can
travel long distances because it does not “sorb to
bedrock.” (Id. ¶ 18.) Vinyl chloride has
not been detected at the YRC Terminal, but there have been
three reported detections of chlorinated solvents at
low-level concentrations and shallow to moderate depths.
(Id. ¶¶ 48-49.)
Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (“IEPA”)
first detected DCE in Well 3 in 2002. (Id. ¶
19.) DCE was detected again in Plaintiff's treated water
in February 2008. (Id.) In April 2008, vinyl
chloride was detected in the treatment plant for Well 3.
(Id. ¶ 20.) Testing in 2008 and 2009 showed
increasing levels of DCE and vinyl chloride in all three of
the Wells and the treated water. (Id.) Plaintiff
installed and is currently treating its water supply with
“air-stripping” equipment. (Id. ¶
21.) Vinyl chloride and DCE were also found in community
wells in South Chicago Heights and Ford Heights, which are
near Sauk Village. (Id. ¶¶ 22-37.)
2010, Plaintiff retained K-Plus Engineering, LLC to determine
the source of the vinyl chloride contamination. (Id.
¶ 38.) K-Plus was unable to identify a source and
formally requested help from the United States Environmental
Protection Agency (“USEPA”) in 2012.
(Id. ¶ 40.) K-Plus indicated that additional
investigations into the groundwater at the YRC Terminal were
needed. (Id. ¶ 41.) The IEPA conducted an
investigation of the source of the vinyl chloride water
contamination from 2012 to 2014. (Id. ¶ 42.)
The IEPA was unable to determine the source of the chemical
contamination. (Id. ¶ 44.)
judgment is appropriate when “the movant shows that
there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the
movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 56. Courts deciding summary judgment motions
must view facts “in the light most favorable to the
nonmoving party only if there is a ‘genuine'
dispute as to those facts.” Scott v. Harris,
550 U.S. 372, 380 (2007). A genuine dispute as to any
material fact exists if “the evidence is such that a
reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
party.” Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc., 477
U.S. 242, 248 (1986). The moving party has the initial burden
of establishing that there is no genuine dispute as to any
material fact. Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S.
317, 323 (1986). If the moving party meets this burden,
“[t]he nonmoving party must point to specific facts
showing that there is a genuine issue for trial.”
Stephens v. Erickson, 569 F.3d 779, 786 (7th Cir.
2009). Factual disputes do “not preclude summary
judgment when the dispute does not involve a material