Market Overview

Bergman Draper Oslund: Lone Star Industries to Pay $1.1M in Wrongful Death Suit


Exposure to asbestos products linked to rare cancer diagnosis and

A jury has awarded the family of a Poulsbo man $1.1 million in a
wrongful death lawsuit. The jury's verdict found Lone Star Industries,
based in Stamford, Connecticut (formerly called Pioneer Sand and
Gravel), culpable in the death of Andrew Miller, who died from
mesothelioma in November 2016.

Medical experts testified that Miller, who worked as a machinist at
Lockheed Shipyard and Puget Sound Naval Shipyard between 1967 and 1980,
experienced high exposure to asbestos insulation products supplied by
Pioneer Sand and Gravel. Jurors found that the exposure to these
products was a substantial factor in causing his mesothelioma, a rare
form of terminal cancer.

Attorneys Chandler Udo, Craig Sims and Kaitlin Wright from Seattle firm
Bergman Draper Oslund argued that Lone Star was aware of the hazards of
its asbestos-containing thermal insulation products yet failed to
furnish warnings. And while the company denied that they supplied
asbestos products to Lockheed Shipyard or Puget Sound Naval Shipyard,
Udo, Sims and Wright presented multiple eye-witness accounts of delivery
and installation of these products.

Matthew Bergman, Principal at Bergman Draper Oslund, said: "This is the
first time in the state of Washington that Lone Star Industries has been
held responsible for supplying asbestos products to these local
shipyards, after well over a decade of denying responsibility. We view
this case as a significant breakthrough, and we are pleased to bring
some closure to Mr. Miller's family."

Washington state has one the highest rates of mesothelioma in the
country. Kitsap, King, Pierce and Benton-Franklin have appeared in the
"top 10" counties in the U.S. with the highest percentage of cases.
Washington courts have developed a distinctive body of jurisprudence
applicable to proving exposure in asbestos cases, specifically as it
relates to the type of circumstantial evidence sufficient to demonstrate
that exposure to a defendant's product was a substantial factor in
causing the plaintiff's harm. In Lockwood
v. AC&S
, the state Supreme Court held that where there is
evidence that an asbestos-containing product was used at plaintiff's
jobsite an inference arises that the plaintiff was exposed to that

This case was originally filed with the Superior Court of Washington
King County in October 2016 and spent three weeks at trial. After
careful deliberation, the jury awarded Diane E. Miller, a representative
of Andrew Miller, with the $1.1 million award on Tuesday, July 17, 2018.

About Bergman Draper Oslund:

Draper Oslund
is a Seattle-based firm of lawyers and dedicated staff
with over 25 years' experience, devoted solely to helping mesothelioma
clients, with an emphasis on the Northwest. The firm has won more than
$700 million for its clients, achieving record setting awards for
victims exposed to asbestos at work or at home and through primary or
secondary exposure.

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