The estate of a machinist mate in New York has been awarded $3.2 million in compensation for the mesothelioma he contracted while working for Jenkins Bros., a company that made the valves that led to his asbestos exposure.
In the case at the Supreme Court of New York, County of Schenectady NY, the estate of Scott Shays was awarded the multi million dollar award for his past pain and suffering and loss of the pleasures of life.
The jury found Jenkins Bros. 50% responsible, stating that the company acted with a reckless disregard for the safety of workers.
According to court documents, Shays was exposed to asbestos gaskets, packing and external insulation that were found in and around Jenkins valves, which he used in his time in the US Navy and Vermont National Guard. He served as a machinist mate fire apprentice from April to December 1976.
Shays died from pleural mesothelioma in April 2016 and was 57 years old.
Mesothelioma is a horrible and incurable form of cancer that affects the linings of the organs, including the lungs, heart and abdominal organs. It also affects the nerves and blood vessels in parts of the chest, so it is especially painful and difficult to treat. Most mesothelioma victims die within 18 months, and the disease is nearly always caused by exposure to asbestos.
In our work as railroad mesothelioma attorneys, we know that there really is no safe level of asbestos exposure. All types of asbestos can cause mesothelioma. Even if the worker has a short exposure period – as apparently was the case in the above NY lawsuit – it can be enough for the mesothelioma to be considered at least partially related to the person’s occupation.
In the railroad industry, we know that these companies try various tricks and tactics to delay and drag out legitimate claims that are filed under the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA). For instance, our mesothelioma legal firm once represented two railroad workers who contracted mesothelioma from their work as conductors and switchmen.
The railroad argued that it had no asbestos in products that the workers would have ‘normally’ been exposed to. However, we brought in experienced industrial hygiene experts who accessed internal railroad documents and invoices. They concluded that the workers were indeed exposed to deadly asbestos fibers in their work on the railroad.
They sadly died before the case was brought to conclusion, but at least our mesothelioma attorneys were able to secure a large settlement to ensure the finances of their grieving families.