A widow from Arizona filed an asbestos lawsuit in Madison County Circuit Court Sept. 6, alleging her husband's mesothelioma was caused by the negligence of 40 defendant corporations.

Mary Beattie of Sierra Vista Arizona claims her husband Ronald was employed from 1948 to 1974 as an electrician's mate, naval instructor and a salesman in various locations in the states of California, Colorado and Illinois and on many occasions was exposed to asbestos and asbestos-containing products.

She also claims Ronald was exposed to asbestos during non-occupational work projects including home and automotive repairs, maintenance and remodeling.

Represented by Baron and Budd in Dallas and Korein Tillery of St. Louis, Beattie claims the defendants were negligent in failing to timely and adequately warn her husband of the dangerous characteristics and serious health hazards associated with exposure to asbestos and machinery calling for the use of asbestos products.

"Ronald's exposure to and inhalation, ingestion, or absorption of the asbestos fibers emanating from asbestos products was completely foreseeable and could or should have been anticipated by the defendants," the complaint states.

According to the complaint, Ronald was first diagnosed with mesothelioma on Oct. 20, 2004, and died on Sept. 6, 2005.

Beattie claims the defendants failed in their duty to exercise reasonable care and caution for the safety of people working with and around asbestos.

She claims the defendants intentionally or with a reckless disregard for Ronald's safety:

  • included asbestos in their products, when the defendants knew or should have known that the asbestos fibers would have a toxic, poisonous and highly deleterious effect upon his health;

  • included asbestos in their products when adequate substitutions were available;

  • failed to provide adequate warning to people working with and around the products about the dangers of inhaling, ingesting or otherwise absorbing fibers in them;

  • failed to provide adequate instruction concerning the safe methods of working with and around asbestos products; and

  • failed to conduct tests on the asbestos-containing products, manufactured, sold or delivered by the defendants in order to determine the hazards to which workers might be exposed.

    Beattie alleges the defendants are guilty of willful and wanton misconduct. She claims Ronald had to undergo costly medical treatment and that he suffered great physical pain and mental anguish as a result of his asbestos exposure.

    She also claims Ronald was hindered and prevented from pursuing his normal course of employment losing large sums of money he would have otherwise earned.

    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.

    Beattie also claims that Ronald's death has deprived his family of his means and support and that his family has spent substantial sums of money for his funeral and burial.

    The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Dan Stack.

    06 L 746

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