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Baltimore– Asbestos Legal – Asbestos Cancer Lawsuit
Ky. woman names 144 defendants in asbestos lawsuit
6/21/2010 10:37 AM By Kyla Asbury -Kanawha Bureau
CHARLESTON -- A Lexington, Kentucky, woman named 144 defendants in an asbestos-related case after she wasdiagnosed with mesothelioma.
On Feb. 23 Joni L. Johnson was diagnosed with mesothelioma, according to a complaint filed May 17 in Kanawha Circuit Court.
Johnson claims her father was employed by the defendants from 1948 until 1976 as a pipefitter.
The defendants are being sued for negligence, contaminated buildings,breach of expressed/implied warranty, strict liability, intentional tort, conspiracy, misrepresentation and post-sale duty to warn, according to the suit.
Johnson claims she is a non-smoker.
Johnson is seeking a jury trial to resolve all issues involved in the case. She is being represented by Victoria Antion, Scott A. McGee, John D. Hurst and Joseph Satterley.
The case has been assigned to a visiting judge.
The 144 defendants involved are 3M Company; 4520 Corporation, Inc.; A.K. Steel Corporation; A.O. Smith Corporation; A.W. Chesterton Company; Ajax Magnethermic Corporation; AKZO Nobel Chemicals, Inc.; Allegheny Energy Service Corporation; Allied Chemical Corporation; American Electric Power Service Corporation; American Electric Power; Appalachian Power Company; Aristech Chemical Corporation; Ashland Oil, Inc.; Aurora Pump Company; B.P. Oil Company;BaltimoreAircoil Company, Inc.; Beazer East, Inc.; Bechtel Corporation; Bondex International, Inc.; Brand Insulations, Inc.; Buffalo Pumps, Inc.; BW IP, Inc.; Calgon Carbon Corporation; Cameron International Corporation; Cashco, Inc.; Catalytic Construction Company; Certainteed Corporation; Chicago Pump Company; Cincinnati Valve Company; Forlift LP Corporation; Cleaver-Brooks Company, Inc.; Columbus McKinnon Corporation; Cooper Industries, Inc.; Copes-Vulcan, Inc.; Crane Co.; Crown, Cork & Seal USA, Inc.; DeZurik, Inc.; Dow Chemical Company; Dravo Corporation; E. I. DuPont de Nemours; Eaton Corporation; Elliott Turbo Machinery Company; Exxon Mobil Oil Corporation; F.B. Wright Company; Fisher Controls International, LLC; Flowserve FSD Corporation; Flowserve US, Inc., a/k/a Sier Bath Pumps; Flowserve US, Inc., f/k/a Durco International, Inc.; Fluor Corporation; Fluor Enterprises; FMC Corporation; Foseco, Inc.; Foster Wheeler Energy Corporation; Gardner Denver, Inc.; Garlock, Inc.; General Electric Company; General Refractories Company; George V. Hamilton, Inc.; Georgia Pacific Corporation; Gorman-Rupp Company; Goulds Pumps; Hercules, Inc.; Honeywell International, Inc.; Honeywell International f/k/a Allied Signal, Inc.; Howden Buffalo, Inc.; Huntington Alloys Corporation; Huntington Alloys Corporation f/k/a International Nickel Company, Inc.; I. U. North America, Inc.; IMO Industries, Inc.; Industrial Holdings Corporation; Ingersoll-Rand Company; Insul Company, Inc.; ITT Corporation; J.H. France Refractories Company; Kentucky Power Company; Lawrence Pumps, Inc.; Leslie Controls, Inc.; Lockheed Martin Corporation; Manitowoc Company, Inc.; McJunkin Corporation; Metropolitan Life Insurance Company; Milwaukee Valve Company; Mobay Chemical Corporation; Monongahela Power Company; Monsanto Company; Morgan Engineering, Inc.; Mueller Steam Specialty; Nacco Materials Handling Group, Inc.; Nagle Pumps, Inc.; National Service Industries, Inc.; Nibco, Inc.; Nitro Industrial Coverings, Inc.; O.C. Keckley Company; Oakfabco, Inc.; Oglebay Norton Company; Ohio Power Company; Ohio Valley Insulating Company, Inc.; Ohio Valley Electric Corporation; Owens-Illinois, Inc.; P&H Mining Equipment, Inc.; Peerless Boilers Company; Pneumo Abex Corporation; Premier Refractories, Inc.; Rapid American Corporation; Reading Crane; Riley Power, Inc.; Rockwell Automations, Inc.; Roper Pump Company; Rust Constructors, Inc.; Rust Engineering & Construction, Inc.; Schneider Electric USA, Inc.; Shell Oil Company; Spirax Sarco, Inc.; Standard Oil Company, Inc.; Standco Industries, Inc.; State Electric Supply Company; Sterling Fluid Systems (US), LLC; Stockham Valves & Fittings; Sunbeam Corporation; Superior Boiler Works, Inc.; Surface Combustion, Inc.; Taco, Inc.; Tasco Insulations, Inc.; the F.D Lawrence Electric Company; the Gage Company; the Gorman-Rupp Company; the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company; Thiem Corp.; Trane U.S., Inc.; UB West Virginia, Inc.; Union Carbide Chemical & Plastics Company; Uniroyal, Inc.; United Engineers & Constructors, Inc.; USX Corporation; Viacom, Inc.; Viking Pump, Inc.; Vimasco Corporation; WT/HRC Corporation/Whiting Corporation; Washington Group International; Weil-McLain Company; West Virginia Electric Supply; Yale Materials Handling Corporation; Yarway Corporation; and Zurn Industries, Inc.
Kanawha Circuit Court case number: 10-C-893
Baltimore – Asbestos Trades – $15 Million Mesothelioma Jury Award
Baltimore city jury awards $15M for Mesothelioma death
Daily Record, The (Baltimore), May 16, 2010 by Danny Jacobs
ABaltimore cityjury has awarded $15 million to the family of anOakland woman whodied of mesothelioma as a result of her husband's exposure to asbestos in Ford brakes.
The judgment last month in favor of the family of Joan Dixon would be reduced to approximately $6 million after applyingMaryland's cap for non-economic damages, according to Jonathan Ruckdeschel, the family's lawyer.
The cap for 2008, the yearDixon was diagnosed, limits non- economic damages in wrongful-death claims by two or more individuals to just over $1 million. The awards toDixon's four daughters and her husband would be affected by the cap, but the $5 million awarded to Joan Dixon's estate would not be reduced, Ruckdeschel said.
If Ford appeals, Ruckdeschel said, he will challenge the validity of the damages cap on cross-appeal.
Harry S. Johnson of Whiteford, Taylor & Preston LLP in Baltimore, Ford's lawyer, did not return calls seeking comment.
The alleged asbestos exposure occurred between the early 1960s and the late 1970s, according to the lawsuit.Dixon's husband, Bernard, worked a couple of nights a week at a garage owned by a friend, Ruckdeschel said. Bernard Dixon's garage work was primarily on the brakes of Ford cars, Ruckdeschel said.Dixon also worked on the family cars, also Fords, Ruckdeschel added.
"Mrs. Dixon was exposed to asbestos dust created by Mr. Dixon's work with and around asbestos-containing automobiles containing replacement parts for those automobiles," the complaint states.
Joan Dixon was diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma in March 2008 and died in February 2009.
Three other defendants in the case -- Honeywell International Inc., Georgia Pacific Corp. and Union Carbide Corp. -- reached out- of-court settlements prior to the 12-day trial before Judge John M. Glynn. The jury of five women and one man found against Ford in its cross-claims against the settled defendants, Ruckdeschel said.
The jury reached its verdict after less than three hours of deliberation, said Ruckdeschel, of The Ruckdeschel Law Firm LLC inEllicott City. He said the jury was not persuaded by the defense argument that asbestos in brakes cannot cause mesothelioma.
"I think the jury simply didn't believe asbestos from brakes was different from any other form of asbestos," he said.
The family was grateful for the jury's verdict, he added.
"It was a difficult experience for them to go through their wife's and mother's death," Ruckdeschel said.
Copyright 2010 Dolan Media Newswires
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BaltimoreMaryland – Asbestos Trades – $9.036 Million Mesothelioma Award
$9.936M Awarded to Son of Merchant Mariner for Household Exposure to Asbestos
Posted January 27th, 2010 by marketnet
45-Year-Old ManDiagnosed with Mesothelioma in 2007, 35 Years After Exposure to Asbestos Dust on Father’s Work Clothes
BALTIMORE,Md. — January 27, 2010 — ABaltimore City jury yesterdayawarded $9.936 million to the son of a merchant mariner who suffers with mesothelioma as a result of being exposed to asbestos dust contained in his father’s work clothes more than three decades ago.
The plaintiff, Leroy Conway, Jr., was just ten years old when his father went to work aboard the S.S. Baltimore Trader, an oil tanker owned and operated by ATTRANSCO, Inc. During the elderConway’s 1974-1977 tenure as an engineman on the vessel, he worked in areas known to contain asbestos, and his uniform would become laden with asbestos particles and dust. Over a three-year period, his young son was exposed to the deadly asbestos that permeated the father’s work clothes, which were laundered in the family’s home.
The younger Mr. Conway, now a 45-year-old husband and father of three children, was diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma in May 2007. He has undergone radical surgery to remove a lung, and is unable to work.
The jury found that ATTRANSCO acted with negligence in its duty to warn and protect its workers — and by extension, their families — from the harmful effects of asbestos and asbestos-containing products installed on their vessels. ATTRANSCO was the sole defendant in the case.
Witnesses for ATTRANSCO, which included the captain of the S.S. Baltimore Trader during the time in question, admitted that it was known that asbestos was present on the vessel. However, it was stated that neither the company nor the captain were made aware of the dangers of asbestos until 1980 at the earliest, and therefore could not have been responsible for Mr. Conway’s injuries.
The jury rejected the defense argument, agreeing with plaintiff that ATTRANSCO should have know of the hazards of asbestos and acted to protect workers well before the elder Conway’s tenure on the S.S. Baltimore Trader. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) commenced regulation of asbestos exposure in 1971, and the harmful effects of asbestos had been documented by industry as early as the 1940s.
Mr. Conway, along with his wife, Yolanda, and mother, Berlena, traveled fromTexas for the 10-day trial. Mr. Conway and his mother both testified. Mr. Conway’s wife was too grief stricken to sit on the stand. All three were in court when the verdict was read. The jury awarded Mr. Conway $9.3 million for pain and suffering, and $636,688 for medical expenses.
“We’re very pleased for the family,” said Scott Frost, WK partner and lead counsel for the case. “Leroy is facing a terminal diagnosis, and his family is facing an uncertain future. The jury brought a measure of justice to theConways today.”
About Waters & Kraus, LLP
Waters & Kraus, LLP, is a plaintiffs’ firm concentrating on complex product liability and personal injury/wrongful death cases. The firm’s diverse practice includes toxic tort (asbestos and mesothelioma) litigation, pharmaceutical product liability, negligence, consumer class actions, elder financial abuse, and consumer product liability, as well as qui tam (whistleblower), and commercial litigation. With offices in Maryland, Texas, and California, Waters & Kraus has litigated cases in jurisdictions across theUnited States on behalf of individuals from all 50 states, as well as foreign governments.
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BaltimoreMaryland –Asbetsos Products - $1.68 Mesothelioma Verdict
Maryland appeals court upholds $1.68M asbestos verdict
Daily Record,The (Baltimore), Jan 4, 2010 byCarynTamber
A $1.68 million award in an asbestos case can stand, the state's second-highest court has held.
The Court of Special Appeals rejected several arguments by the two companies held liable for Carl L.Saville'smesothelioma and carcinoma, including their contention that the trial judge improperly denied their motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict.
The court held that Saville, a former paper mill worker, presented enough evidence at trial to support a finding that the asbestos-containing products with which he worked caused his illnesses.
"The evidence in this case, taken in a light most favorable toappellee, does not lead to the inexorable conclusion thatScapa [Dryer Fabrics] was not liable and therefore gives us no reason to overturn the trial court's decision to denyScapa's motions for judgment or JNOV," Judge Albert J.Matricciani Jr. wrote for a three- judge panel.
There was enough evidence thatScapa's dryer felts would discharge asbestos, that Saville worked with the product and that he was exposed to it for a long enough period of time,Matricciani wrote.
David J. Shuster ofKramon & Graham P.A., who representedScapa on appeal, declined to comment beyond saying that the company is "evaluating its options." Susan E. Smith ofCrosswhite,Limbrick & Sinclair LLP, who represented the other company, the Wallace & Gale Asbestos Settlement Trust, did not return a call for comment.
Michael T. Edmonds of the Law Offices of Peter T.Nicholl, who argued the case for Saville, said he expects the companies to petition the Court of Appeals for certiorari.
Edmonds said he is gratified that the Court of Special Appeals accepted his contention that there was "plenty of evidence" to support the theory thatScapa andW&G's products causedSaville's illnesses.
This is the second timeSaville's case has gone to the Court of Special Appeals. In 2005, the appellate court reversed a $3 million verdict, holding thatScapa should have been granted a continuance to conduct additional discovery, since it was added as a defendant only six months before trial.
The case went back to trial, again producing a substantial verdict.
Saville's medical situation is also unusual, according to his lawyer. About 90 percent of people diagnosed withmesothelioma, an asbestos-linked cancer, die within five years, according to the American Cancer Society. Saville was diagnosed in 2001 or 2002.
Edmonds said Saville, now 66, was diagnosed with lung cancer first, and when doctors went to treatit, they discovered and treated themesothelioma as well. Saville is in pain, but his tumors are not growing discernibly,Edmonds said.
"Mr. Saville is the only person I'm aware of that's survived this long,"Edmonds said.
According to the opinion, Saville worked at the Westvaco Pulp and Paper Mill inLuke,Md. from 1964 to 1978. He was responsible for cleaning dryer fells, which are used in paper production.
After he developed cancer, he suedScapa and W&G. He also filed suit against three other parties but settled with them before trial.
At the second trial,Scapa and W&G presented a limited case against the other defendants, eager to minimize their own liability but afraid that proving that the cross-defendants' products contributed toSaville's injuries would imply that their products did, too. This produced what the Court of Special Appeals called "a rather unusual trial on the cross-claims with no one to defend them, during which appellants simply read evidence into the record."
After the verdict,Scapa moved for JNOV onSaville's claims and on its cross-claims against the three defendants that settled, and W&G moved for JNOV just on the cross-claims. Judge John M. Glynn denied both motions.
On the cross-claim issue, the Court of Special Appeals held that Saville andW&G's motion had to fail because they had not moved for judgment at any point during trial, a prerequisite for a JNOV motion.
The appellate court also rejectedScapa's argument that Glynn should have reduced the judgment to account for payments Saville received from bankruptcy settlement trusts. The company had argued that the trusts were joint tort-feasors, necessitating a reduction in the judgment, because they dispense funds in compensation for damages allegedly caused by asbestos.
"Scapa presents an interesting theory, and there is some support in case law for this proposition, but there is no evidence on the record that can support its application to this case,"Matricciani wrote. "The burden was onScapa to prove joint tort-feasor status of any claimed bankruptcy settlement trusts, and this was not done."
The appellate court also dismissed other claims byScapa, including its contentions that Glynn improperly excluded deposition testimony ofSaville's former co-worker on possible alternate exposure to asbestos and that the judge should not have admitted evidence from afterSaville's asbestos exposure.
WHAT THE COURT HELD
Case:Scapa Dryer Fabrics Inc. et al., CSA No. 540, Sept. Term 2008.Reported. Opinion byMatricciani, J. Filed Dec. 29, 2009.