Boiler Manufacturer’s Affirmative Defenses of Sophisticated User and Superseding Cause Dismissed on Summary Judgment United States District Court, D. Maryland, April 29, 2019

MARYLAND — The plaintiff brought suit against several defendants including Foster Wheeler alleging her decedent, Mr. Morris, developed and passed from mesothelioma as a result of his occupational exposure to asbestos while working at Bethlehem Steel Sparrows Point Shipyard from 1948-1970’s. Foster Wheeler asserted various defenses in its amended answer including the defenses of sophisticated user and superseding cause. The plaintiff moved for summary judgment on those two defenses. The court started its analysis by noting the standard for summary judgment. Summary judgment is appropriate…
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Auto Trade Association Successfully Challenges Plaintiff’s Claims of Specific Personal Jurisdiction United States District Court, N.D. California, April 29, 2019

CALIFORNIA — The plaintiff Thomas Toy filed suit against several defendants including National Automotive Parts Association (NAPA) alleging that he developed mesothelioma from the use of its asbestos containing products while maintaining vehicles. NAPA moved to dismiss the matter for lack of personal jurisdiction. The plaintiff opposed the motion arguing that the court had specific jurisdiction under the “stream of commerce theory” or NAPA’s “efforts to serve directly or indirectly the market for asbestos containing products in this State.” Both parties agreed that the court…
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Plaintiff’s Claim Under Market Share Liability Dismissed Against Brake Manufacturer U.S. District Court for the N.D. of California, April 29, 2019

CALIFORNIA — The plaintiff, Gary Farris, alleged that his lung cancer was caused by performing brake and clutch changes at an automotive shop in San Jose, California from 1960 to 1964, and while performing personal automotive work from the 1960s to the 1980s. He named several manufactures of automotive brakes. His theory of liability against those defendants was premised on a claim of market share liability. Honeywell moved to dismiss that count in the initial complaint and the motion was granted. Upon amendment of the…
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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 Denies All Post-Trial Motions of Valve Defendant and Plaintiffs New York Supreme Court, April 24, 2019

NEW YORK — In James and Lynn Stock v. Air & Liquid Systems Corp., et al, the Supreme Court of The State of New York, Eighth Judicial District, recently considered the defendant’s and the plaintiffs’ post-trial motions. At the trial of the original case, the plaintiffs James and Lynn Stock (plaintiffs) filed suit for James Stock’s (Stock) mesothelioma allegedly caused by exposure to asbestos while he was employed at New York Wire Mills in Tonawanda, NY from 1979 through 1986. The plaintiffs argued that…
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Union Carbide Obtains Summary Judgment Due to Speculative Evidence Superior Court of Delaware, April 24, 2019

DELAWARE — The plaintiff, Jane Rowland, alleged she developed mesothelioma from washing her husband’s clothes. Her husband performed home remodeling projects in Ohio in the 1970s using Georgia-Pacific joint compound. the plaintiff alleged that Union Carbide was responsible for her injuries because it supplied asbestos to Georgia-Pacific for use in its joint compound. Specifically, Union Carbide supplied Calidria asbestos to Georgia-Pacific. The plaintiff argued in opposition to Union Carbide’s Motion for summary judgment that there was evidence that Georgia-Pacific’s Chicago plant distributed to the Midwest,…
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Plaintiff’s Failure to Establish Worksite Control Leads to Grant of Summary Judgment in Premises Liability Case” Superior Court of Delaware, April 18, 2019

DELAWARE — The plaintiff Werner Rath brought suit against several premise defendants including Delmarva Power and Light, Four Star Oil and Gas Company, Texaco, Inc. and Sunoco (defendants) alleging exposure to asbestos while working for Catalytic at worksites owned by the defendants. Specifically, Mr. Rath alleged exposure to asbestos from other trades working around him while he built and dismantled scaffolding at the different sites. The other trades were also employed by Catalytic. Relying on several precedent cases, the defendants moved for summary judgment arguing…
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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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Summary Judgment Granted in Secondary Exposure Case United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana., April 18, 2019

LOUISIANA – The plaintiffs, the children of Theresa Rodrigue (Ms. Rodrigue), allege their mother was secondarily exposure to asbestos contained in products manufactured by multiple product manufacturers (defendants) who moved for summary judgment, respectively, when Ms. Rodrigue washed the clothing of her brother, a rigger in a shipyard. The court granted the defendants summary judgment on the basis that the evidence in the record was insufficient with respect to an essential element of the plaintiffs’ claims. Consequently, since no genuine factual dispute existed, summary judgment…
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Railroad Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment Based on Standing Denied United States District Court, D. Nebraska, April 19, 2019

NEBRASKA — In Bettisworth v. BNSF Railway Company, the court denied a defendant’s motion for summary judgment, which argued that the plaintiff was not the properly appointed representative for his late wife’s estate. The plaintiff’s wife was employed by the defendant from 1979 to 2012 as a laborer/hostler at the defendant’s yard in Alliance, Nebraska. During her employment, she was exposed to various toxic and carcinogenic substances, including various solvents, diesel fuel, benzene, creosote, silica dust, and asbestos insulation. The plaintiff alleged that the cumulative…
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