Mechanic’s Exposure to Asbestos Leads to Wrongful Death Mesothelioma Claim

Verdict Reached – $2 Million in damages suffered from Honeywell and eight other companies responsible for the asbestos exposure Davis experience is his career

Daughter of deceased mechanic was substituted in place of her father and filed a first amended complaint for wrongful death mesothelioma claim. She pursues to claim that in her father’s career working with brake linings, asbestos dust particles placed a major role in his death. Only six months after he was diagnosed with mesothelioma Sam Davis passed away.

Davis started his career working in the automotive industry primary brake jobs. During the time he was required to perform brake replacements, Bendix linings we made up 50 percent chrysotile asbestos by the weight. With a daily average of working on one to two brake replacements per day, Davis was inhaling many harmful asbestos fibers.

Prior to the install of each brake replacement of the new Bendix linings, Davis would sand each new lining for a few minutes. The inhalation of asbestos particle dust would be known for the cause of Davis’s mesothelioma diagnosis. At the same time, Davis also worked as a home remodeler and was exposed to some asbestos in that capacity as well, according to court documents.

In August 2011, Davis was diagnosed with malignant epithelial mesothelioma. The following month he proceeded to file a lawsuit against Honeywell and also included other defendants related home remodeling jobs he completed at that time.

Supporting his family, Davis would also take on home remodeling projects. He would complete 2 to 3 home projects each month during the same time period. The work he completed on the remodeling of homes exposed him to other products that contained asbestos related carcinogens. Installation of ceramic floor tiles and sheetrock.

Some of these materials required a joint compound that contained asbestos. The inhalation of the dust powder prior to the compound being mixed with water, produced a great amount of inhalable asbestos fibers. Even after letting the joint compound dry, Davis was required to sand and smooth out the compound which again would create hazardous asbestos fibers that get ingested into the body.

Nickole Davis presented the testimony of Dr. Strauchen, a pathologist and Dr. Barry Castleman, a public health expert.

These expert physicians had reviewed Davis’s medical records and deposition transcript. Both physicians testified at their depositions and both stated that Davis’ exposure to asbestos from the sanding of the Bendix brake linings during replacements took part as a serious contributing factor in the symptoms of his mesothelioma diagnosis.

With his direct examination, Dr. Strauchen testified how the body’s respiratory system operates and what happens when a person develops symptoms of mesothelioma. In detail he describes the different types of asbestos and the harmful effects when asbestos fibers are inhaled.

He testified that the primary cause and only proven cause of mesothelioma is asbestos exposure. and that Davis died from that disease. Explaining that both forms of asbestos (amphibole and serpentine, or chrysotile) are the main asbestos fiber causes of mesothelioma, and that mesothelioma symptoms develop even with low amounts of asbestos exposure.

He explained that asbestos exposure increases in quantity because the fibers attach into the lungs for a long period of time, so each manifesting joins the previous exposures. He also explained that asbestos-related diseases, particularly mesothelioma, typically take decades for the symptoms to occur from exposure to asbestos.

The jury concluded their verdict and found that Honeywell was 85 percent liable for Davis’s asbestos related cancer. The other 15 percent falling on eight separate claims to companies responsible for his asbestos exposure related to home remodeling work completed. The jury awarded the Davis’ family $2 million in damages suffered.

Matthew Davis

Author

Matthew Davis has studied journalism at the University of Colorado and has covered civil litigation for a variety of publications. He joined Mesowatch in 2016 and covers asbestos litigation developments in the U.S., as well as newsworthy asbestos cases.