We at Bergman Draper Oslund Udo are proud to announce the results of a wrongful death lawsuit in which we represented the family of a late client against the client’s one-time employer. The jury delivered a verdict in our clients’ favor and ordered the employer, Ameron International Corporation, to pay $30 million in damages. The trial took place in Portland.
Worked for Ameron for four months
Our client died of mesothelioma in January 2021 at the age of 67. Back in 1974, he worked as a sandblaster and laborer at an Ameron pipe factory for a few months in California. Ameron failed to warn our client or his coworkers that their jobs exposed them to high levels of crocidolite asbestos, despite a 1972 rule from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration requiring certain warnings and safety practices to protect American workers from asbestos exposure. Instead, workers at Ameron believed they were working with fiberglass. Even though he only worked there for a short time, our client was exposed to the asbestos that would later take his life.
Ameron did not protect its employees
Evidence shows that Ameron continued to use crocidolite asbestos in its products even as major asbestos suppliers phased it out in the 1970s due to its highly carcinogenic nature. As a result, of the less than 400 people who worked at the factory, at least six have been diagnosed with mesothelioma, the form of lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure.
“Ameron treated these workers as if they were disposable,” said Vanessa J. Firnhaber Oslund, who tried the case along with Brendan E. Little. “But the jury vehemently disagreed with Ameron’s devaluation of human life.” The size of the verdict will hopefully help our late client’s family feel that justice has been served.