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62-year-old Gerald Barlow was a rigger, welder and pipe fitter who worked at the “Pier 32” San Diego naval repair facility during the 1960s and 1970s. Barlow was diagnosed with mesothelioma in April 2005 and died in March 2006. Via video deposition, Barlow testified that he frequently worked on and around Elliott forced-draft blowers and turbines while performing routine maintenance, and that the asbestos-containing components contained in Elliott’s products caused his mesothelioma. The defense argued that Barlow did not work around Elliott Products, and if he had, the Navy was responsible for his asbestos exposure. The jury found Elliott liable for Barlow’s illness due to defective product design, failure to warn, and negligence, and awarded Barlow’s widow $1.749M. The jury also found that Elliott acted with malice, but a confidential settlement was reached prior to the jury’s determination of punitive damages.
December 11, 2007
$1.749M award; case settled during punitive damages phase
$549.4k in economic damages
$1.2M for loss of consortium
Elliott Company assessed 40% liability
Thought to be the first liability verdict against Elliott Company in an asbestos case
Thought to be first punitive verdict against Elliott in an asbestos case
Plaintiff’s victory in a Navy asbestos exposure case
Cause No. BC335153
Barlow v. American Standard, et. al.
Trial length: 4 weeks Deliberation: 2 days
Los Angeles County, Calif., Superior Court, Dept. 18
Hon. Helen I. Bendix, presiding
Plaintiff’s Experts (live testimony)
Samuel Hammar, M.D., cell biologist
Kenneth Cohen, C.I.H. (ret.), industrial hygienist
Capt. Frank Burger (U.S. Navy, ret.), Navy expert
Defense Experts (live testimony)
Capt. Richard Wasson (U.S. Navy, ret.), Navy expert
William Hughson, corporate industrial hygienist
Waters Kraus & Paul, LLP (Los Angeles):
Thomas H. Hart III
Walsworth Franklin Bevins & McCall LLP (Orange County):
Disclaimer: Results obtained depend on the facts of each case. Award amounts are not actual cash amounts received by plaintiffs. Deductions are made for liens, attorney fees and expenses.
That’s the first question everyone asks. The truth is it’s impossible to know. But we can tell you this. Waters Kraus & Paul has what it takes to fight against big corporate interests and win. That’s why we’ve taken more mesothelioma trials to verdict than any other firm. And that’s why we’ve recovered more than $1.3 billion for clients like you. Do you think you have a case? Contact us now to speak with an attorney.