Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.

Man sues Pennsylvania company, says asbestos gave him lung cancer

Last week we wrote about the potential asbestos problem at the Pittsburgh Police Training Academy. While some brushed off reports of asbestos and other hazardous material in the building as being low-risk, a current lawsuit filed in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania could show the serious affects that such hazardous conditions can have on an individual's long-term health.

An 82-year-old man who worked for much of his life in Pennsylvania has filed a mass tort injury lawsuit against CSX Transportation, the U.S. Navy, B&O Railroad and other companies. In his claim, he alleges that all of the employers he worked for in Pennsylvania allowed their employees to be exposed to asbestos. Last year, the man was diagnosed with lung cancer, which he believes is a result of the asbestos exposure.

According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff says the exposure to asbestos came from fiber being present in his various workspaces or from asbestos products that his employers manufactured, distributed or sold. In addition to punitive damages and interest, the man is seeking more than $100,000 in compensation from the defendants. It was also mentioned in the lawsuit that the man smoked cigarettes heavily for more than 60 years, so it will be interesting to see if that plays a role in the case.

As anyone in Pennsylvania can imagine, and as some people know firsthand, finding out you have cancer is unquestionably devastating. As if matters could get any worse than that, if you believe that your illness is attributable to poor workplace conditions, you may feel angry and even resentful. Fortunately, there are ways to hold a negligent employer accountable for allowing employees to be exposed to hazardous materials. In a situation like this, speaking to an attorney about a premises liability claim may be a good first step toward seeking compensation from an employer.

Source: The Pennsylvania Record, "Former Maryland mayor who developed lung cancer files asbestos mass tort claim against CSX Transportation," Jon Campisi, March 28, 2013

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