Jury Awards Substantial Verdict Against Allis Chalmers Corporation

Jury Awards Substantial Verdict Against Allis Chalmers Corporation


Case Style: David H. Fortier, et al., vs. Aerco International, Inc., et al, In the Superior Court J.D. of Fairfield  at Bridgeport,Connecticut, No. BA 06-5005849S

Plaintiff(s): David H. Fortier, deceased and Gail M. Fortier

Defendant: Allis-Chalmers Corporation

Verdict Date: March 10, 2009

Facts: David Fortier, a 59-year oldFlorida resident, suffered from mesothelioma caused by asbestos exposure. Fortier was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2006 and died from this fatal disease on June 20, 2008. Fortier was a fireman assisting machinist mates in the machinery spaces on the USS Forrestal from 1969-1972. He regularly worked on and around Allis-Chalmers pumps that contained asbestos gaskets and packing. Many of the pumps were also covered in asbestos insulation.

Following less than five hours of deliberations, the jury returned a substantial dollar verdict in favor of the Fortier family. The jury assessed significant non-economic damages and economic damages. The jury found that the Allis-Chalmers Corporations pumps were a substantial factor in causing Dave Fortier’s death. The pumps were found to be defectively designed and the jury concluded that the company negligently failed to warn Dave Fortier and others of the inherent dangers of working with their asbestos-laden pumps.

“We are so happy for Gail Fortier and her family. David Fortier did exactly what he was supposed to do – he worked hard to provide for his family and served his country honorably. He had no idea that Allis-Chalmers products could hurt him. Allis-Chalmers had every right to know that using their product could hurt people, people like Dave Fortier and continued to sell their pumps with no warnings. Only the jury force Allis-Chalmers to accept responsibility. On Tuesday, they unanimously decided that this company was liable for what they did to David and his family,” said Jessica Dean, lead counsel for the Fortier family.

Plaintiff attorneys: Jessica Dean, Eddins & Greenstone, LLP, Dallas, Texas
Christopher Meisenkothen, Early, Ludwick & Sweeney, LLC; New Haven, Connecticut

Defense attorneys: Jeff Ment, Rome McGuigan, P.C., Hartford, Connecticut
Morris Borea, Rome McGuigan, P.C., Hartford, Connecticut

Judge: Honorable David Honorable David R.

Plaintiff experts: Dr. Arnold Brody (cell biologist); Captain William Lowell (Retired Navy Captain); Dr. Gary Crakes (economist); Jerald Abraham, M.D. (pathologist); and Steven Paskal (industrial hygienist).