Application of Product Line Doctrine Imposes Liability Upon Successor in Interest of Asbestos Supplier Court of Appeals, Washington, Division 1, May 28, 2019

WASHINGTON – The plaintiff, Edward Leren, filed suit alleging that decedent Marvin Leren developed mesothelioma as a result of his employment with Z Brick Company from 1961-1981. It was alleged that Benson Chemical (Benson) supplied Z Brick with raw asbestos used in their decorative bricks. Leren poured the raw asbestos into hoppers to mix the ingredients used to make the bricks. The defendant at trial was Elementis, the successor to Harrisons and Crosfield Pacific, Inc. (HCP). HCP had previously acquired Benson. The jury returned a…
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Additional Defendants’ Motions for Summary Judgment Granted Where Plaintiff’s Affidavit and Related Expert Testimony Ruled Inadmissible United States District Court, W.D. Washington, at Tacoma, May 22, 2019

WASHINGTON – As reported on the Asbestos Case Tracker on May 6, 2019, in Varney v. Air & Liquid Systems Corporation, et al., the court ruled on several defendants’ motions for summary judgment. The plaintiff, Donald Varney, filed suit against numerous defendants alleging exposure to asbestos while working as a marine machinist at multiple shipyards in Washington caused his mesothelioma. The complaint was removed to federal court. One day before he passed away, the plaintiff signed an affidavit stating that he worked with various defendants’…
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Plaintiff’s Failure to Establish Causation Against Pump Defendant Leads to Grant of Summary Judgment U.D. District Court Washington W.D., May 14, 2019

WASHINGTON – The plaintiffs filed suit against several defendants alleging their decedent, Mr. Klopman-Baerselman developed mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos for which the defendants were liable. The case was removed to federal court. Viking Pump (Viking) moved for summary judgment arguing that the plaintiff could not establish the necessary element of causation. Specifically, Viking argued that the plaintiff had no evidence that he was exposed to a Viking product and therefore he could not prove that Viking’s products were a substantial factor…
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Summary Judgment Granted for Multiple Defendants in W.D. Washington When Plaintiff’s Affidavit Ruled Inadmissible U.S. District Court for the District of Washington, May 6, 2019

WASHINGTON — The plaintiff, Donald Varney, filed suit against numerous defendants alleging exposure to asbestos while working as a marine machinist at shipyards in Washington caused his mesothelioma. The complaint was removed to federal court. One day before he passed, plaintiff signed an affidavit stating that he worked with various defendants’ products or products supplied by the defendants, including those of defendants Crosby Valves, Goodyear Tire and Rubber, Foster Wheeler, Air and Liquid Systems, Weir Valves and John Crane, Inc. The plaintiff was not deposed…
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Washington’s Statute of Repose Determined to Not Apply to Premises Owners Court of Appeals of Washington, Division 1, May 13, 2019

WASHINGTON – For approximately seven months in 1971, Gary Cameron worked as a boilermaker at the Centralia Steam Plant in Washington State during its construction, which was completed in 1972. Asbestos-containing thermal insulation was used in building the plant, and Cameron’s estate alleged that his fatal mesothelioma was caused in part by exposures during his time at Centralia. They sued appellee PacifiCorp, who was among those responsible for constructing the plant, and who maintained an ownership interest until 2000, bringing claims against them as both…
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Court Partially Grants Two Defendants’ Motions for Summary Judgment Based on Expiration of Statute of Limitations Under Washington Law U.S. District Court of Washington W.D, April 18, 2019

WASHINGTON — In Deem v. Air & Liquid Systems Corporation, et al., the United States District Court of the Western District of Washington recently ruled on two defendants’ motions for summary judgment. This case involved Thomas A. Deem (Mr. Deem), who worked at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard from 1974 to 1981 as an apprentice and journeyman, and alleged asbestos exposure from 1974 through 1979. Mr. Deem was diagnosed with mesothelioma in February 2015, and died in July 2015. In November 2017, Mr. Deem’s wife…
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Court Calls For Supplemental Briefing For Summary Judgment Motion Following DeVries Decision United States District Court, W.D. Washington, April 18, 2019

WASHINGTON — A federal court in Washington state called for supplemental briefing prior to ruling on summary judgment motions in two similarly situated cases involving maritime exposures. Donald Yaw worked as a shipfitter, structural planner, and estimator at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard (PSNS) in Bremerton, Washington from 1964 to 2001. Thomas Deem worked as an outside machinist at PSNS from 1974 to 1981. The plaintiffs alleged that Mr. Yaw and Mr. Deem’s fatal mesotheliomas were caused by both the use of asbestos-containing products and…
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Date of First Purchase Creates Material Fact Dispute, Automotive Supplier’s Motion for Summary Judgment Denied U.S. District Court, W.D. Washington, March 13, 2019

WASHINGTON — The plaintiff Eric Klopman-Baerselman originally filed suit in state court on behalf of the plaintiff’s decedent Rudie Klopman-Baerselman, alleging that his exposure to asbestos-containing products manufactured, sold, or distributed by the defendants substantially contributed to his mesothelioma. The defendants subsequently removed the case to federal court. The allegations against the moving the defendant, O’Reilly Automotive Stores, Inc. (O’Reilly) are that the plaintiff’s decedent was exposed to asbestos-containing brakes, clutches, and gaskets purchased at Schuck’s, an entity under the O’Reilly umbrella. O’Reilly moved for…
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Plaintiff’s Motion for Entry of Final Judgment Denied in Wake of Appeal United States District Court, W.D. Washington. January 08, 2019

WASHINGTON — In the ongoing Leslie Jack litigation previously reported by Asbestos Case Tracker, the plaintiff’s Motion for Entry of Final Judgment in favor of Union Pacific Railroad (Union) was recently denied. The plaintiff moved for entry after Union’s motion for summary judgment was granted by the court and after a mistrial against remaining defendants DCo and Ford was declared. The plaintiff argued that entry of final judgment would lead to judicial economy predicated on the theory that if the plaintiff prevailed on its appeal…
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Apparent Manufacturer Theory of Liability Upheld for Subsidiary Insulation Cement Manufacturer Washington Supreme Court, November 1, 2018

WASHINGTON – In a case of first impression, the Washington Supreme Court adopted Section 400 of the Restatement (Second) Torts, recognizing a manufacturer’s liability for claims arising prior to the 1981 Product Liability and Tort Reform Act, and assessing such liability by applying the objective reliance test, which requires viewing all of a defendant’s relevant representations from the perspective of the ordinary, reasonable consumer, finding that a Court of Appeals Panel had erred in holding that objective reliance be judged only from the perspective of…
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