Pittsburgh laborer files asbestos suit in Madison County

Steve Gonzalez Jan. 13, 2005, 3:10am

Michael Hudac, a Pittsburgh, Pa. laborer employed at Pittsburgh Purifying Metals (PPM) in 1973, filed an asbestos lawsuit in Madison County Circuit Court Jan. 11 seeking more than $100,000 in compensatory and punitive damages.

Alleging that her husband's deadly disease, mesothelioma, caused her to be deprived of his companionship, society and services, Hudac’s wife, Sarah, also is seeking more than $50,000 for loss of consortium.

Naming 80 defendants, Hudac claims that during his employment at PPM he was exposed to and inhaled, ingested, or otherwise absorbed large amounts of asbestos fibers emanating from certain products he was working with and around which were manufactured, sold, distributed or installed by the defendants'.

Due to the asbestos exposure, Hudac claims he was diagnosed on Sept. 2, 2004, with mesothelioma.

Hudac alleges that the defendants failed to exercise ordinary care and caution for his safety by including asbestos in their products, even though it was completely foreseeable and should have been anticipated that people working with or around them would inhale, ingest, or otherwise absorb great amounts of asbestos.

Defendants included asbestos in their products even though adequate substitutes for asbestos were available, and they failed to provide warnings of the dangers of working around asbestos, according to the suit.

Hudac claims that the defendants’ engaged in the following deliberate, intentional and wanton omissions or commissions:

  • Furnished asbestos-containing products to Hudac for use in his duties at the facility;

  • Failed to inform Hudac about the known dangers of asbestos exposure at the facility;

  • Failed to inform Hudac of its known potentially hazardous work place as a result of asbestos exposure;

  • Failed to replace asbestos products while substitutes were available by 1930; and

  • Made Hudac work in dangerous areas of the facility knowing that it posed a significant health hazard to people because of the friable and deteriorating condition of asbestos products.

    Hudac is represented by Randy Gori of Goldenberg, Miller, Heller & Antognoli of Edwardsville.

    The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Daniel Stack, who handles all asbestos litigation in Madison County.

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