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Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 4th Circuit Revives Contamination Suit Against Horseshoe Casino Developers

RICHMOND, Va. - A Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 1 revived a lawsuit brought by a number of Maryland residents against the city of Baltimore and the developers of the Horseshoe Casino, ruling that a federal judge erred when dismissing their claims under the Resource Conservation and...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Defendants: Plaintiffs Fail To State Claim in VOC Litigation

FORT MYERS, Fla. - A group of chemical companies being sued by a farm trust that alleges that the companies have contaminated the trust's property with volatile organic compounds on July 1 filed a brief in Florida federal court arguing that the plaintiffs' second amended complaint should be dismissed...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Tennessee Court Affirms Causation Experts, Evidence, $3,335,685 Asbestos Verdict

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A Tennessee court on June 30 rejected a railroad's challenges to asbestos causation experts and evidence and affirmed a $3,335,685 judgment (Linda J. Russell, et al. v. Illinois Central Railroad Co., No. W2013-02453-COA-R3-CV, Tenn. App.; 2015 Tenn. App. LEXIS 520).

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Missouri Jury Awards $11.5M In Mesothelioma Case Against Crane Co.

ST. LOUIS - A Missouri jury on July 2 awarded a widow $11.5 million for her husband's death from mesothelioma, including $10 million in punitive damages, in a case alleging exposure to asbestos in gaskets and packing on Crane Co. valves, sources told Mealey Publications (Jeanette G. Poage, et al...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge: Environmental Groups Must Prove Standing During Trial Over Oil Spill

NEW ORLEANS - A federal judge in Louisiana on July 7 denied Taylor Energy Co. LLC's second attempt to dismiss a Clean Water Act (CWA) and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) lawsuit brought by three environmental groups over an alleged underwater oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, ruling...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 3rd Circuit Reinstates Mechanic's Asbestos Action Against Engine Maker

NEWARK, N.J. - A mechanic's testimony regarding work on airplane engines, combined with evidence that asbestos-containing seals contaminated engine compartments as they broke down, overcome summary judgment, a Third Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel held in reinstating a man's case July 7 ...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 9th Circuit Affirms Man's Conviction Over Storing Hazardous Waste

PASADENA, Calif. - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 8 affirmed a man's conviction for violating the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) for storing barrels of hazardous waste without a permit, rejecting the man's argument that the evidence presented at trial showed...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Justice Grants More Time For Stipulated Reduction Of $190M Asbestos Award

NEW YORK - A New York justice handed plaintiffs 60 days to stipulate to the reduction of a $190 million asbestos verdict, saying in an opinion posted July 7 that a pending appellate case could assist both parties (Santo Assenzio v. A.O. Smith Water Products, Robert Brunck v A.O. Smith Water Products...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Court Affirms Punitive Damages In New York Asbestos Cases But Finds Process Flawed

NEW YORK - A New York justice acted within her powers in amending an asbestos case management order (CMO) to allow for punitive damages, but the ruling violates due process protections by charging the jury at the conclusion of the evidentiary phase, improperly leaving defendants guessing about whether...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Man: MDL Judge Got It Wrong; Sophisticated Intermediary Rejected In California

SAN FRANCISCO - A California court rejected the sophisticated intermediary defense the judge overseeing the federal asbestos multidistrict litigation assumed it would adopt in granting summary judgment to a shipbuilder, a man argues in a brief filed July 8 in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 9th Circuit Upholds Ruling Finding ASARCO's CERCLA Contribution Claim Untimely

SAN FRANCISCO - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled July 10 that a federal judge in California properly found that ASARCO LLC's claim for contribution under Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) Section 113(f) was untimely because the statute...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Couple Granted Discovery Into Automaker's Relationship With Prior Companies

NEW YORK - A couple may conduct further discovery into an automaker's relationship between various prior companies before dismissal of the defendant, a New York justice held in an opinion posted July 10 (In re: New York City Asbestos Litigation, Jay and Sharon Gayoso v. American Honda Motor Company...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - D.C. Circuit Denies Biofuel Makers' Challenge Over EPA's Test Fuel Rule

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulation requiring that testing for new motor vehicles use "commercially available" fuel is not arbitrary and capricious, the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 14, overruling a petition by manufacturers...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - California Court: Insufficient Evidence Supports $32.5M Punitive Damage Award

LOS ANGELES - Evidence of a company's revenue alone provided a jury too small a picture of the company's actual health, a California appeals court panel held July 15 in reversing $32.5 million in punitive damages in an asbestos case. The court affirmed the jury's award of $2 million in noneconomic...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 5th Circuit Majority Says It Lacks Jurisdiction Over BP's Settlement Appeal

NEW ORLEANS - A 2-1 panel of the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 16 that it does not have jurisdiction under the collateral order doctrine to review BP Exploration & Production Inc.'s appeal of a federal judge in Louisiana's decision to bar the company and plaintiffs from viewing...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Power Company To Spend $7.1M To Reduce Pollution From Coal-Fired Plants

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Interstate Power & Light Co., a subsidiary of Alliant Energy, on July 15 agreed to pay a $1.1 million civil penalty for violating the Clean Air Act and spend $6 million to upgrade emissions technologies at seven of its coal-fired power plants in Iowa to reduce emissions of sulfur...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Court Finds Witnesses Properly Excluded, Manufacturer Properly Granted Judgment

LOS ANGELES - A judge properly excluded hearsay layperson testimony, as well as unfounded expert testimony of a hobbyist, in finding insufficient evidence of a man's exposure to a manufacturer's televisions, a California appeals court panel held July 16 (Jenny M. Leidig, et al. v. Zenith Electronics...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 5th Circuit Denies Groups' Challenge To EPA's Approval Of Texas Emissions Plan

NEW ORLEANS - A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 20 affirmed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's approval of the State of Texas' State Implementation Plan (SIP) that provides flexible permits for minor sources of pollution, after finding that seven environmental groups...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Judge Orders Ross Development To Pay $745,898 To PCS Nitrogen For Contamination

CHARLESTON, S.C. - A federal judge in South Carolina ruled July 21 that Ross Development Corp. must pay $745,898.86 to indemnify PCS Nitrogen Inc. for costs, fees and expenses PCS incurred when defending claims brought by Ashley II of Charleston LLC under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 7th Circuit Affirms Dismissal, Sanctions For Third-Party Contribution Suit

CHICAGO - A federal judge in Illinois did not err when finding that a trucking company could not pursue a contribution claim under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) against parties with which it previously entered into a settlement agreement and properly...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 4th Circuit Affirms Ruling Ordering Man To Pay Restitution For Diluting Oil

RICHMOND, Va. - A federal judge in North Carolina did not err when ordering a man to pay restitution to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, an oil company and his insurer as a result of his violation of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), a Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled July 29...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Hawaii AG Announces $15.4M Settlement Over 2013 Molasses Spill

HONOLULU - Hawaii Attorney General Douglas S. Chin on July 30 announced that Matson Navigation Co. will pay $15.4 million to resolve claims stemming from a September 2013 molasses spill that discharged 233,000 gallons of molasses into Honolulu Harbor and will cease its operations there.

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Georgia Court Reinstates Portion Of Household Asbestos Exposure Case

ATLANTA - A Georgia appeals court on July 31 denied reconsideration, leaving stand its decision that a pipe maker's duty to household members is irrelevant the question of whether it negligently designed its asbestos-containing pipe (Fletcher v. Water Applications JE-025 Distribution Group Inc.,...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - 6th Circuit Upholds Ruling Finding Lockheed Not Required To Indemnify Goodyear

CINCINNATI - A Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on July 30 affirmed a federal judge in Ohio's ruling finding that Lockheed Martin Corp. is not required pay $2 million to Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. for litigation costs incurred in a previous Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation...

Mealey's Toxic Tort/Environmental - Illinois Court Finds Exclusion Of Asbestos Exposure Evidence Fatal

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. - A judge erred in excluding evidence attempting to show that a man's disease arose not from a defendant's conduct but from work at a facility tainted with asbestos dust, an Illinois appeals panel held July 30 (James Smith v. Illinois Central Railroad Co., No. 4-14-0703, Ill...