Five plaintiffs name 84 companies as defendants in asbestos suit

Kelly Holleran Oct. 20, 2009, 3:21am

Five people have filed an asbestos suit against 84 defendant corporations, alleging either they or a recently deceased relative developed an asbestos related disease.

Plaintiffs Alice Faye Galloway, Billy Jean Jones, Floy Elvira Linder, Larry Linder on behalf of the recently deceased Johnnie Melvin Linder and Michael Curtis Whisnant claim they or their recently deceased loved ones worked as craftsmen and construction tradesmen at refineries and chemical plants throughout Texas.

Throughout the course of their careers, the plaintiffs claim they were forced to work near asbestos-containing insulation and other asbestos products , which led to their diseases, according to the complaint filed Oct. 14 in Jefferson County District Court.

The defending companies failed to keep their premises safe, but implied they were attempting to protect their workers by hiring insurers, the suit states. However, the insurers failed to conduct inspections of the premises and report results, the complaint says.

"Even after defendants knew the truth about the propensity of asbestos they remained mute when by reasonable effort they could have prevented the risk of cancer and asbestosis from afflicting the Plaintiffs," the suit states.

In addition, the defending companies negligently failed to properly instruct the plaintiffs on how to avoid asbestos exposure, the plaintiffs claim.

As a result, the plaintiffs or their loved ones have developed an asbestos related disease or cancer because of their exposure, according to the complaint.

Because of their diseases, the plaintiffs claim to have lost their earning capacity, lost their ability to enjoy life, suffered a reduced work-life expectancy and experienced intense pain, suffering and mental anguish.

Those who lost loved ones say they have lost society and consortium.

All claim to have incurred medical costs.

In the complaint, the plaintiffs are seeking punitive damages, plus pre- and post-judgment interest, costs and other relief to which they may be entitled.

Chris Portner of Reaud, Morgan and Quinn in Beaumont will be representing them.

The case has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court.

Jefferson County District Court case number: D185-121.

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