Archive for liability

Chemours and Its Parent Company, DuPont Sued Again Over Toxin Contamination

DuPont Co. and its former subsidiary, Chemours are once again facing charges by the State of Ohio for perfluorooctanoic acid, PFOA damages. They are accused of inappropriately dumping of the chemical for 60 years even though they knew it was harmful to human health.

Earlier lawsuit

An earlier lawsuit had found them liable for the injuries that resulted from people drinking water contaminated by the chemical from their West Virginia plant.

Additional Liability

Even though the two companies had settled the earlier lawsuits by paying hundreds of millions of dollars, the state of Ohio still finds them liable for long-term damages and cleaning costs. Mike DeWine, the state’s Attorney General, pointed out that since the pollutants are not degradable, its effects are bound to continue.

The state conducted a series of health studies in 2017 to determine the dangers of the chemical. The studies showed that most of the personal injury plaintiffs in the first case still had accumulated levels of PFOA in their blood. The toxin has been shown to cause kidney and testicular cancer, ulcerative colitis, and increased level of bad cholesterol.

The lawsuit alleges that DuPont defended its profits at the expense of human life. The company is also accused of having intentionally hidden dangers of the toxin from government officials.

Blame game

DuPont was the parent company of Chemours. However, it sold out to form DowDuPont Inc. Chemours had initially agreed to bear the liability of its parent company concerning the cases in question. However, a later agreement saw them share responsibility. Chemours, however, has declined any liability for punitive damages.

The decision by Chemours has caused an endless blame game between the two firms. The spokesperson of DuPont, Dan Turner, insists that the company is fully insured by Chemours and is consequently not liable for any charges related to its previous projects.

Additional woes

The woes of the two firms are far from over as they face new inquiries by federal regulators over another chemical, GenX, which they used on the same site.

Besides the lawsuits, the value of Chemours fell by 3.6 percent in New York Trading to $46.49 on Thursday when the case was filed.

In a related case, the former producer of PFOA, 3M.Co is facing similar charges in Minnesota. The trial is set to begin in mid-February.

$1.5 Million Spokane Bus Settlement Skirts Liability Issue

A woman injured when the SUV in which she was a passenger rear-ended a Spokane Transit Authority (STA) bus has settled with the company for $1.5 million. The settlement carries no admission of liability.

Danielle Laughner was a bride of only one day when the SUV driven by her husband Brian Laughner struck the bus. Despite the STA settlement, her husband’s insurance company paid $25,000 after he was deemed responsible for the collision, according toThe Spokesman-Review.

STA-lawsuitThe accident occurred on March 4, 2011. The bus driver stopped in the right lane of four-lane U.S. Highway 2 rather than on the nine-foot shoulder next to a bus stop. He said he sought to avoid merging back into traffic and that the bus flashers were on.

Danielle Laughner suffered a fractured pelvis, compound wrist and hand fractures, and other major injuries. To extract her, workers cut off the top of the SUV.

Journalist’s Resource reports that the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute found that an average of 63,000 buses of all types are involved in accidents annually. Some 14,000 of these mishaps are linked to personal injury. Around 325 prove fatal.

In its safety tips, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration cautions bus drivers to be aware of potential No-Zones, blind spots where collisions are likely to happen. Brian Laughner indicated that his view of the STA bus was blocked initially by a delivery van between his SUV and the parked bus. State transportation authorities had already discussed how to get funds for a wider bus stop.

Danielle Laughner’s attorney argued that the bus driver’s failure to pull off the highway created a traffic hazard. Her legal team also found that one STA driver policy cites the need for drivers to move off the road whenever possible.

STA attorneys countered that it was up to the bus driver’s discretion whether to pull over or not. The Washington State Transit Insurance Pool settled the case, which carried no admission of liability.

In the end, though Danielle Laughner collected a settlement, it was the so-called following car doctrine that prevailed regarding her husband’s responsibility for the accident.