A Florida man diagnosed with mesothelioma filed suit approximately 800 miles away from home in Madison County Circuit Court Dec. 15, claiming 143 defendant corporations are responsible for his illness.
Richard Mahoney claims he was employed from the late 1940s to 2006 as a gas station attendant, boilermaker, maintenance worker, crane operator, assembler, steelworker, and machinery installer at various locations.
He claims he was diagnosed with the fatal disease on July 6, and asserts his exposure to asbestos fibers was completely foreseeable and could or should have been anticipated by the defendants.
Some of the defendants include AutoZone, Bondex, DaimlerChrysler, Dow Chemical, Ford Motor Company, General Electric, Goodyear, John Crane, The Pep Boys, Sears and Western Auto.
Mahoney claims that during the course of his employment and during home and automotive repairs he was exposed to and inhaled, ingested or otherwise absorbed asbestos fibers emanating from certain products he was working with and around.
"The plaintiff's exposure and inhalation, ingestion or absorption of the asbestos fibers was completely foreseeable and could or should have been anticipated by the defendants," the complaint states.
Mahoney claims the defendants knew or should have known that the asbestos fibers contained in their products had a toxic, poisonous and highly deleterious effect upon the health of people.
Mahoney alleges that the defendants included asbestos in their products even when adequate substitutes were available and failed to provide any or adequate instructions concerning the safe methods of working with and around asbestos.
He also claims that the defendants failed to require and advise employees of hygiene practices designed to reduce or prevent carrying asbestos fibers home.
As a result of the alleged negligence, Mahoney claims he was exposed to fibers containing asbestos. He developed a disease caused only by asbestos which has disabled and disfigured him, the complaint states.
He seeks damages to help pay for the cost of her treatment.
Mahoney also suffers "great physical pain and mental anguish, and also will be hindered and prevented from pursuing his normal course of employment, thereby losing large sums of money," the complaint states.
He is seeking at least $250,000 in damages for negligence, willful and wanton acts, conspiracy, and negligent spoliation of evidence among other allegations.
"In addition to compensatory damages, an award of punitive damages is appropriate and necessary in order to punish the defendants for willful, wanton, intentional and reckless misconduct and to deter them and others from engaging in like misconduct in the future," the complaint states.
Mahoney is represented by Nathaniel Mudd and Perry Browder of SimmonsCooper in East Alton.
The case has been assigned to Circuit Court Judge Daniel Stack.
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Ford Motor Company