A former Dow chemical worker with mesothelioma was awarded $6 million by a Louisana jury this week, in a lawsuit filed against his former employer over on-the-job exposure to asbestos.
Sidney Mabile filed a mesothelioma lawsuit against Dow Chemical and other companies, alleging that he developed the fatal form of cancer following asbestos exposure at the Dow’s plants.
According to the complaint, Dow exposed thousands of employees to asbestos for years, without giving them proper warning about the health risks or providing adequate protection.
On Wednesday, a jury in Plaquemine, Louisiana returned a verdict in Mabile’s favor, awarding $6 million in damages. Dow was found responsible for a portion of the verdict, as were McDermott Shipyards and Sewart Seacraft. According to a report by Law360.com, Dow officials say they will appeal the verdict.
During the trial, documents reportedly revealed that Dow tried to suppress the efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ban asbestos, because of the cost of switching to non-asbestos products. The lawsuit claims thousands of Dow Chemical workers are still exposed to asbestos at the company’s plants.
Mesothelioma is a rare form of cancer, which is only known to be caused by exposure to asbestos and breathing asbestos fibers. It is a lethal disease that is often at a very advanced stage when a diagnosis is made, resulting in a very short life-expectancy.
Mesothelioma litigation is the longest-running mass tort in U.S. history, with more than 600,000 people having filed a lawsuit against more than 6,000 defendants after being diagnosed with cancer that was allegedly caused by inhaling asbestos fibers.
In addition to claims for workers exposed to asbestos, in recent years there have been a growing number of mesothelioma lawsuits are brought following second hand exposure, with wives, children and other family members alleging they developed the disease after breathing asbestos fibers brought home in the hair or on the clothing of individuals who worked directly with the material.