Fraser Shipyards Settles Lead Poisoning Lawsuits

Updated: November 07, 2018 10:38 PM

Superior's Fraser Shipyards has reached agreements to settle multiple lawsuits from dozens of workers who were exposed to lead during work on a ship.

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The agreements total $7.5 million for 60 workers.  Their lawsuits had alleged that the workers were exposed to dangerous levels of lead while they worked on the Herbert C. Jackson while it was in dry dock during the winter of 2016.

The workers alleged that Fraser and the owner of the vessel failed to protect employees from dangerous overexposure to lead.

"We believe that this settlement, which resolves all outstanding claims, is in the best interests of all parties," said James Farkas, President and Chief Operating Officer of Fraser Industries, in a news release.

Rapoport Law Offices, P.C., which represented the plaintiffs, said the settlement was reached after a judge scheduled the first of three lawsuits for a Dec. 3 jury trial. A news release from Rapoport said the vast majority of workers were able to continue working after their blood lead levels started to drop but some have experienced lingering complaints.

David Rapoport, one of the attorneys who represented the workers said "This case cried out for justice. What happened at Fraser Shipyards should not be repeated anywhere."

An investigation by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration resulted in an earlier $700,000 settlement.

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