Ohio Asbestos Lawsuits Target Ohio Manufacturers
For most of the 20th century, American companies manufactured and sold asbestos-containing products for various uses and industries. Asbestos was used in construction, auto parts, industrial plants, shipyards, schools, hospitals, and other industries, creating a widespread occupational health hazard. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an estimated 125 million people are exposed to asbestos in the workplace worldwide.
Asbestos has been classified as a known cancer-causing agent by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Evidence over the years has revealed that numerous companies involved in manufacturing and selling asbestos-containing products knew about potentially deadly risks of exposure. Attorneys in Ohio representing victims and families claim unscrupulous companies and employers concealed available health information from workers and consumers.
If you or your loved one have been diagnosed with an asbestos-related disease, please contact The Lyon Firm at (800) 513-2403. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries. Joe Lyon is a highly qualified toxic tort attorney with experience handling Ohio asbestos lawsuits.
Ohio Asbestos Exposure Risks
While many studies stress that long-term, regular exposure to asbestos can pose the greatest threat to employees, medical evidence indicates that even brief exposure to asbestos can cause fatal illnesses like lung cancer, asbestosis and mesothelioma. The International Agency for Research on Cancer has concluded there is no safe level of human exposure.
When asbestos fibers break down, they can be inhaled and cause inflammation and scarring of the lungs, and further cause deadly cancers such as mesothelioma. The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that a wealth of research shows a “clear” and “strong link” between asbestos exposure and serious health issues like respiratory cancers. The agency notes that the longer a person is exposed in an unsafe workplace, the more hazardous their situation may be.
Products Manufactured with Asbestos
At one point, asbestos was used in approximately 3,000 types of products in the U.S. One of the most widespread commercial applications was within insulation products, used in homes and workplaces. Its natural resistance to heat made asbestos desirable for various other applications, particularly in heavy industry. Some of the most common asbestos products include the following:
- Brake pads
- Asbestos sheets
- Protective gloves and aprons
- Electrical cloth and electrical Panels
- Ceiling tiles
- Roofing materials
- Fume and laboratory hoods
- Textile cloths and garments
- Floor backing
- Drywall taping
Manufacturing Asbestos Products
Employees at the following companies may face a very high risk of exposure to asbestos:
- General Electric (GE)—Avon, Ohio
- General Electric (GE)—Louisville, Ohio
- Ford Motor (Cleveland Engine)—Brook Park, Ohio.
- Ford Motor (Lima Engine)—Lima, Ohio.
- Ford Motor (Sharonville Transmission)—Cincinnati, Ohio.
- General Motors Telex Factory—Hudson, Ohio.
- Foseco—Cleveland, Ohio.
- Owens Corning—Oxford, Ohio.
- Owens Corning—Toledo, Ohio.
- Owens Corning—Granville, Ohio.
- Owens Illinois glass—Perrysburg, Ohio.
- Johns Manville—Waterville, Ohio.
- Johns Manville—Defiance, Ohio.
- Glass Fibers, Inc.—Toledo, Ohio.
- Republic Powdered Metals—Medina, Ohio.
- Dana Corporation—Maumee, Ohio.
- Lincoln Electric—Euclid, Ohio.
- North American Refractories—Cleveland, Ohio.
- Native Manufacturing—Lewisville, Ohio.
- Scott’s Company—Marysville, Ohio
Mesothelioma Trust Funds
Courts have found asbestos companies liable for a person’s injury or death, and in addition to awarding victims and families for medical expenses and pain and suffering, they have also demanded punitive damages from companies for their wrongdoings. Some mesothelioma lawsuits have resulted in large verdicts or settlements.
When many companies involved in asbestos lawsuits had to reorganize, they often created personal injury trusts to fund current and future liabilities. Even though some companies were forced into bankruptcy, victims can still make claims against the company and seek compensation through Ohio asbestos lawsuits.
Ohio Asbestos Lawsuits
Lawyers say many asbestos manufacturers focused on sales and profits, and failed to improve workplace safety standards. Some companies ignored emerging damaging medical evidence, and even hid information that might damage their business.
As a result, workers have filed asbestos-related claims against over 8,000 corporations. The number of victims is still growing, and lawyers in Ohio are currently involved in litigation, including the claims against the following companies:
Foseco Asbestos Lawsuits
Foseco, located in Cleveland, Ohio, has been named in more than 5,000 asbestos-related lawsuits. According to court records, at least eight former employees have died from mesothelioma, asbestosis or asbestos-related lung cancer. Foseco has paid more than $13 million in settlements to victims. Foseco used millions of pounds of asbestos for castings, some used inside engine blocks. Steel mill and foundry workers were at risk of developing deadly diseases from Foseco’s products.
Owens Corning Asbestos Lawsuits
Owens Corning has been named in thousands of lawsuits over the hazards of its products, which include roof tiles, heat and pipe insulation, cold storage systems and cement. In 2006, the company created the Owens Corning Fibreboard Asbestos Personal Injury Trust, which has already paid out hundreds of millions to victims of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases.
Ohio attorneys allege the company knew about the dangers of asbestos, but failed to properly warn workers about the hazards of toxic exposure. Lawyers involved in asbestos lawsuits have said Owens-Corning knew about the hazards of their products but they chose to advertise the products as safe. In 1997, a Florida jury handed down $31 million in punitive damages after a former Owens Corning worker developed mesothelioma. The court determined Owens Corning concealed information concerning asbestos hazards for decades.
Owens-Illinois Asbestos Lawsuits
Owens-Illinois manufactured a line of asbestos pipe and boiler insulation products under the brand name Kaylo, which became well known for causing many health issues in former employees. In 2011, an Illinois jury awarded a former worker who later developed mesothelioma $90 million in damages against Owens-Illinois. Lawyers stated those who worked in Owens-Corning factories faced exposure hazards on a daily basis. The company has settled thousands of asbestos cases and Owens-Illinois is still involved in asbestos-related litigation today.
Dana Corporation Asbestos Lawsuits
Dana Corporation, in Maumee, Ohio, manufactured asbestos-containing brake pads, brake linings, thermal management products, gaskets and seals. Any shop worker in company could have been at risk for lung cancer, mesothelioma and other diseases. In 2007, the company settled 7,500 lawsuits, and many other may still have a claim. Dana Corporation has created a trust fund for former employees of the company worth $700 million.
North American Refractories Ohio Asbestos Lawsuits
Several types of workers in Cleveland, Ohio’s North American Refractories plants were exposed to a number of dangerous products on a regular basis. This may include cement workers, chemical workers, steel and metal workers, and practically any other employees in the area. The company’s ceramic refractories, hearths and blast furnace fittings and coatings were known to be asbestos laden. The company was bought out years ago, but because of the continuing lawsuits, the company has an estimated $1 billion in liabilities.
Republic Powdered Metals Asbestos Lawsuits
A majority of the thousands of lawsuits filed against Republic Powdered Metals in Medina, Ohio are related to its asbestos-containing Bondex products. The toxic line of products included exterior finishing systems, coatings, colorants and pigments, cleaning products, wood treatments, sealants and asbestos fuel additives. These products were bought by consumers in private and industrial sectors, exposing employees and many more, including painters and roofers.
Lincoln Electric Asbestos Lawsuits
Lincoln Electric, in Euclid, Ohio, has been named in thousands of asbestos-related lawsuits, primarily over its welding rods. In 2003, a jury awarded two former employees more than $6 million after they developed mesothelioma and lung cancer. A more recent verdict in 2010 turned out $21 million for failing to warn workers of the risks.
General Motors Telex Asbestos Lawsuits
The majority of asbestos-related lawsuits filed against GM stemmed from of asbestos-containing brake linings and clutch facings. By 2009, the company was liable for an estimated $636 million in asbestos claims.
Lawyers say GM factories endangered auto mechanics, warehouse employees, brake and clutch assemblers and boiler workers.
The most dangerous asbestos-containing products manufactured by GM include adhesives, transmissions, brake linings, clutch linings, disc brakes, drum brakes, engines and gaskets.
Scott’s Company Ohio Asbestos Lawsuits
Scotts Co., manufactured popular fertilizer products in Marysville, Ohio which contributed to the deaths of at least five workers. Almost anybody working in the plant could have been affected. Two of the five died of asbestos-related lung cancer more than 25 years after they first were exposed at the workplace. Dozens of other current and former workers have been sickened by asbestos fibers on the job, and filed asbestos lawsuits, citing court documents, workers’ compensation claims, medical records and interviews.
Ohio Asbestos Lawsuits
Although heavy asbestos use is now rare, it is not yet banned in the United States. Products today can be legally made with asbestos as long as it accounts for less than 1 percent of the product. According to the EPA, limited amounts of asbestos remain in the following products:
- Cement corrugated sheet
- Cement flat sheet
- Pipeline wrap
- Roofing felt
- Vinyl floor tile
- Cement shingle
- Cement pipe
- Automatic transmission components
- Clutch facings
- Friction materials
- Disk brake pads
- Drum brake linings
- Brake blocks
- Non-roofing coatings
- Roof coatings
Symptoms of mesothelioma, and other asbestos-related diseases may not present themselves for decades after initial exposure. When they do appear, symptoms may be confused with minor illnesses, but in fact the cancer could at a late stage. Some common symptoms include:
- Pain in the side of the chest or lower back
- Shortness of breath
- Excessive sweating
- Weight loss
- Trouble swallowing
- Swelling of the face and arms
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury due to Asbestos Exposure and have questions about the root cause and the legal remedies available to improve quality of life and medical care, contact The Lyon Firm (800) 513-2403. You will speak directly with Mr. Lyon, and he will help you answer critical questions regarding Ohio asbestos lawsuits.