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Articles Posted in Veterans & Mesothelioma

The U.S. Supreme Court will soon take up arguments in an asbestos cancer lawsuit that could set an important precedent not only for other mesothelioma lawsuit plaintiffs but other innocent people harmed by the negligence of companies that failed to prevent foreseeable injuries. The case was brought by two surviving relatives of a man who developed mesothelioma while working aboard Navy ships, coming in contact with industrial gaskets made with deadly asbestos fibers as part of his job duties.

According to the mesothelioma cancer lawsuit, entitled Air and Liquid Systems Corp. v. Devries, the defendants in the case manufactured equipment for Navy ships that did not contain asbestos themselves, but required replaceable parts manufactured by third parties that used asbestos in the construction. The plaintiffs have asked the court to hold Air and Liquid Systems liable for the victim’s passing because they claim the company knew that its products would need integrated parts manufactured with asbestos gaskets and seals by third parties.

Specifically, the plaintiffs asked the justices hearing the case to apply the “foreseeability” standard of negligence commonly used in maritime injury cases which holds that Air and Liquid Systems could reasonably foresee that aftermarket parts containing deadly chemicals could cause harm. On the other hand, the defense has asked the judges to apply a more simplified standard in tort law, holding that the duty of the party to warn rests with that party that is in the best position to control or avoid the harm, in this case, the gasket maker.

Our nation’s military personnel – those of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard – sacrifice much for the country. They endure rigorous training, months away from family, deployment to active combat zones, exposure to the elements, physical pain, exhaustion and more to safeguard our freedoms and keep us safe.

Even after their immediate service ends, some veterans continue to pay the price for the decision to join the military: they were exposed to asbestos while enlisted, and are now dealing with long-term health impact. Asbestos-related illnesses have been seen in vets who served many decades ago (during the Korean War or the Vietnam Conflict), and for those who fought in the more recent campaigns of Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

How were servicemembers exposed?

Military Asbestos Attorney - Asbestos Exposure at public facilities and military bases.jpgA group of military families recently filed a class action lawsuit against several residential entities associated with on-base housing for dependants at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) in Beaufort, South Carolina. Attorneys for the eleven named families in the lawsuit claim that the plaintiffs and potentially tens of thousands of others suffered exposure to several toxic and potentially carcinogenic substances, including asbestos, while living in military housing.

The lawsuit, filed in the Court of Common Pleas Fourteenth Judicial Circuit for Beaufort County, claims that the defendants knew for decades about the seriously hazardous conditions many families lived in while acting as property and real estate managers for the military. The claim even goes so far as to state that the defendants “knowingly and intentionally” placed victims in harm’s way by refusing to alert residents to the dangers they faced.

The named plaintiffs allege that the presence of toxic substances, including cancer-causing pesticides, lead paint, and asbestos, was the direct and proximate cause of their cancer diagnosis and other serious health conditions. Specifically, the complaint alleges exposure to toxic pesticides from storage tanks built from the 1950s to the 1970s that were left near tennant housing. Those allegations first came to light many months ago when one of the lead plaintiffs posted a video on Youtube.

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