The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE:DOW) bows to Asbestos-related lawsuit

Posted by Nathan Alexander August 26, 2013 0 Comment 3200 views


A lawsuit had been filed in the State Court in Louisiana, against The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE:DOW) relating to asbestos-use at its plants. A Plaquemine, Louisiana jury has now found that the company is liable on all the courts. The allegation was that asbestos use was causing cancer in workers at the unit. The Dow Plaquemine Plant is the biggest chemical-plant in the petrochemical industry-rich state.

It had been alleged that the exposure to asbestos at the company was the reason for terminal cancer in Sidney Mabile. In the lawsuit, Mabile’s attorneys had alleged that by using asbestos at the plant, the company has exposed thousands of its workers to the hazards of asbestos. The lawsuit said that Mabile is just one of the potential asbestos-cancer victims who have been exposed at DOW. The famed law-firm, Baron and Budd which has a lengthy history of representing cities, states, and individual occupational and environmental cancer victims, had represented Mabile.

Rampant asbestos use at plants

The court documents revealed that the company continued its use if literally tons of raw-asbestos in its chemical-manufacturing units across the world. Most companies have discontinued the use of asbestos, decades ago. However, the company continues to use this proven carcinogen in all its plants. This is primarily because its processing is almost 10-times cheaper with asbestos than it is with other asbestos-free alternatives. Some internal DOW documents indicate that the company had actually lobbied to oppose the asbestos ban that has been put forth by the Environmental protection Agency.

Fighting against the ban

It had fought the ban successfully and continues using it in the U.S plants. Court documentation suggests that the company had performed one” cost per cancer” analysis and decided that it would cost the company more than $1.2B to transition al its chemical plants to processing methods that did not use asbestos. The company has continued its fight against the asbestos ban in other countries


About Nathan Alexander

Nathan Alexander holds bachelor’s degrees in Journalism and European Studies from Boston University. Nathan reports round up the day’s business and financial market news and include keynote interviews with major business players and updates on Asian, European and US stock markets. He has interviewed heads of leading European banking institutions such as European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet and HSBC Chairman Stephen Green, and CEOs from the business world including Microsoft founder Bill Gates, Virgin Chairman Sir Richard Branson and former Porsche President and CEO Dr Wendelin Wiedeking.

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