SE Texas Record

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Railroad worker’s estate sues PTRA and Union Pacific alleging asbestos-related death

By Carol Ostrow | Sep 4, 2015

Train tracks

A railroad worker’s estate executors are suing his employers alleging wrongful death in the man’s alleged exposure to asbestos over the course of his career beginning in 1959 and culminating in 2002.

Chuck L. Harrison and Karen A. Cannon filed a lawsuit individually and as representatives of the estate of Leon E. Harrison against Port Terminal Railroad Association of Harris County and its successor in interest, Union Pacific Railroad Co., in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas on Aug. 31 alleging negligence dating back to the late 1970s.

The complaint states that the railroad companies were in violation of the Federal Employers’ Liability Act when they allowed Leon Harrison to work with machinery, tools and equipment associated with asbestos exposure. According to the lawsuit, the employee was diagnosed with lung cancer on or about Oct. 5, 2012, and died on Jan. 25, 2013, at age 73.

Charging the defendants with negligence in their alleged failure to protect Leon Harrison, the plaintiffs hold the defendants responsible for failure to avoid asbestos-containing materials, inspect its equipment thoroughly, warn employees of hazardous conditions, provide respirators and medical monitoring, and follow their own policies.

Claiming pain, suffering, anguish, fear, impairment, and medical expenses for the elder Harrison, the plaintiffs seek actual and special damages, pre- and post-judgment interest, attorney’s fees, expenses and costs. They are represented by J. Kirkland Sammons of Sammons & Berry in Houston.

Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas Case 4:15-cv-02512

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