Amber R. Long and Keith W. Binder, associates with Levy Konigsberg LLP, made history Dec. 19 when a Syracuse jury awarded $7.7 million to the family of a deceased bus driver from the Onondaga County town of Manlius.
The verdict, according to a release, is recognized as the largest in Syracuse history for a mesothelioma claim.
According to evidence presented in court, Lewis Nash was exposed to asbestos on a regular basis for more than 30 years through his work as a bus driver for the Fayetteville-Manlius Central School District. He died in September 2012 at age 81.
Long and Binder argued it was Nash’s exposure to asbestos in the school district’s bus garage, where mechanics performed routine maintenance on Navistar Inc. school buses, which led to the fatal cancer.
Court documents reveal that Navistar, formerly known as International Harvester, sold school buses to Fayetteville-Manlius that consisted of asbestos-containing brakes, gaskets and clutches. Nash, a Manlius native, began driving a bus for the district in the late 1950s and could regularly be found in the garage clocking in for his routes, submitting work orders or talking with mechanics. He was exposed to asbestos that had been released into the air by work performed on the asbestos-containing bus parts.
The trial against Navistar began on Dec. and included testimony by the plaintiff’s family and expert witnesses. The jury found Navistar responsible for Nash’s death and awarded emotional and physical damages to his wife Mary.
Levy Konigsberg LLP is a national firm specializing in the representation of mesothelioma and lung cancer victims for close to 30 years.