Dow Chemical Co. and Flexible Products Co. has settled with nearly 1,400 Alabama miners over their claims they were exposed to hazardous chemicals. The settlement involving 1,394 miners came in a Tuscaloosa Circuit Court just as opening statements were due to begin. It took about a month to select a jury and the trial was expected to last three to four months. The terms of the settlement and a related case in West Virginia are confidential. The cases had been pending for a significant period of time. The miners alleged that they were exposed to isocyanate, or rock glue, which was used to shore up walls and ceilings in the mines in central Alabama. The case involving active and former miners was filed in 2001.
Rock glue can cause severe, sometimes life-threatening, asthma. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention describes it as a “powerful irritant” that can affect the eyes, gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts. Exposure sensitizes workers, and deaths have been reported from asthma attacks. The case was before Tuscaloosa County Circuit Judge John England. The case had been moved from Jefferson County, Ala. Dow’s specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses deliver technology-based products to customers in approximately 160 countries. For 25 years, Flexible Products Co. has produced low-cost, high-quality injection molded rubber components for the automotive industry.
Source: Insurance Journal
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