A judge in Marshfield, WI soon will decide if 3M did enough to protect workers from being exposed to asbestos at a door manufacturing plant in Wisconsin.
Asbestos was used to fireproof in the manufacture of doors at the plant for many years in the 1960s and 1970s. However, the respirator that 3M provided to plant employees did not have health warnings or enough protection against deadly asbestos fibers.
The mesothelioma lawsuit is being brought on behalf of seven former workers, but only one is still alive. The trial will be split into several phases, with the first phase handling common claims with liability. The second part will look at causation and damages. The judge is working on a number of causation issues in the case, and is separating possible exposure in the facility from factors in the workers’ homes and communities.
In June 2015, there was a ruling that found that asbestos fibers were released into the air outside by the plant, which is what gave the basis for causes of action to also include negligence, nuisance and strict liability.
3M has a long history of using asbestos in its manufacturing facilities before it was banned by the US Consumer Protection Safety Commission in 1977. Some 3M products that may have contained asbestos include 3M caulk, sticky tar caulking, adhesive and wet adhesive products
The 3M respirator was approved by OSHA for use in areas that were exposed to asbestos fibers – if the exposure did not go over the permissible exposure limit.
Our mesothelioma attorneys in Virginia hope that the judge decides to allow this suit to go forward if the facts warrant it. Our asbestos cancer attorneys have seen all too many railroads in Virginia attempt to avoid their liability for causing this deadly lung cancer in their former workers.
One of the most common challenges in asbestos cancer cases is determining which equipment definitely caused the exposure to asbestos. In the case above, there also are questions about whether asbestos exposure may have occurred outside the workplace. In railroad environments, some of the equipment that may contain asbestos exposure include:
· Steam locomotives and boilers
· Diesel locomotives
· Roundhouses and railroad shops
· Brake shoes
· Railroad offices and buildings
If you worked in the railroad industry and were around this type of equipment and workplace in the 1950s to 1970s, you could have been exposed to asbestos. And if you ever are diagnosed with mesothelioma or related health conditions, know that many railroads knew as early as the 1930s that asbestos could be hazardous to health. Speaking to a knowledgeable mesothelioma attorney could prove highly useful, as our experience shows that these big companies will do their best to avoid paying for financial damages in these cases.