Second asbestos suit over man's death targets distributors

David Yates Aug. 11, 2011, 9:32am


A second asbestos lawsuit brought by the family of the late James Lee Purks has been filed in Jefferson County District Court and names 18 companies as defendants.

Patricia, Robert, Gary and Bryan Purks filed two suits on Aug. 4 on behalf of James Lee Purks, who worked as a pipefitter at Texaco for 27 years. The first suit focused solely on Texaco for allegedly exposing Purks to asbestos.

The second suit focuses of the distributors of the asbestos products James Purks worked with, court papers say.

The suit names Amtek, Bechtel, Crown Cork & Seal, D&F Distributing, Dana Companies, Flour Enterprises, Flour Maintenance, Foster Wheeler Constructors, Foster Wheeler Corp., Foster Wheeler Energy, General Electric, Goulds Pumps, Henry Vogt Machine, Ingersoll Rand, Owens Illinois, Riley Power, Union Carbide and Zurn Industries as defendants.

"As a result of his exposure, James Purks developed an asbestos-related disease, lung cancer, and died on April 20, 2011," the suit alleges.

The plaintiffs allege the defendants conspired to mine, manufacture and distribute asbestos products without warning workers, such as James Purks, of the dangers.

The Purks family is suing for exemplary and punitive damages.

Provost Umphrey attorney Bryan Blevins represents them.

Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd District Court, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. E190-640

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