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Jordan v. Thatcher St., LLC

Court of Appeal of Louisiana, Second Circuit

June 10, 2015

WILLIAM H. JORDAN, Plaintiff-Appellant
v.
THATCHER STREET, LLC, F/F/A R. F. ZIMMERMAN & COMPANY, CHRISTUS HEALTH NORTHERN LA D/B/A CHRISTUS SCHUMPERT HEALTH SYSTEM, PROGRESSIVE CARE CENTER, THE CITY OF SHREVEPORT AND THE STATE OF LOUISIANA, Defendants-Appellees

Appealed from the First Judicial District Court for the Parish of Caddo, Louisiana. Trial Court No. 569821. Honorable Scott J. Crichton, Judge.

AFFIRMED.

MARTZELL & BICKFORD, By: Scott R. Bickford, Lawrence J. Centola, III, Roshawn H. Donahue, Counsel for Plaintiffs-Appellants, William H. Jordan (deceased), Dorothy Jordan, William, H. Jordan, Jr., Ronnie Jordan, Sr.

FRANK M. FERRELL, WATSON, BLANCHE, WILSON, & POSNER, By: René J. Pfefferle, Jennifer M. Durham, Counsel for Defendants-Appellees, Progressive Care Center and Virginia Hall Nursing Home.

BAKER DONELSON BEARMAN, CALDWELL & BERKOWITZ, PC, By: Robert S. Emmett, Paul K. Colomb, Jr., GRAHAM H. TODD, Counsel for Defendants-Appellees, Christus Health Northern LA and Christus Schumpert Health System.

GRAHAM H. TODD, Counsel for Defendant-Appellee, City of Shreveport.

Before STEWART, DREW and PITMAN, JJ.

OPINION

Page 1115

[49,820 La.App. 2 Cir. 1] STEWART, J.

[49,820 La.App. 2 Cir. 2] This is an appeal from a summary judgment dismissing the premises liability claims of the plaintiffs against Progressive Care Center (" PCC" ), one of the defendants against whom a wrongful death and survival action was asserted following the death of the original plaintiff, William H. Jordan (" Jordan" ), from mesothelioma. Upon our de novo review of the record, we affirm the trial court's summary judgment in favor of PCC.

FACTS

Jordan was diagnosed with mesothelioma in June 2013. On September 5, 2013, he filed suit for damages claiming that he was exposed to asbestos while employed by R. F. Zimmerman & Company, Inc. (" Zimmerman" ), from around 1956 until the early 1960s. He sought damages against Zimmerman as his employer and against other named defendants on whose premises he did jobs while working for Zimmerman. PCC, formerly known as the Virginia Hall Nursing Home (" Virginia Hall" ), was among the defendants against whom Jordan asserted premises liability claims. Jordan alleged that PCC was negligent or strictly liable for withholding knowledge of the dangers of asbestos exposure, failing to provide a safe work environment, and failing to protect him from the unreasonably dangerous conditions created by the asbestos on its premises and within its care, custody, or control. Jordan alleged that, while working at Virginia Hall, he was " overexposed to asbestos on a daily basis ... as an immediate bystander to the cutting of asbestos containing insulation and [he] used asbestos containing insulation to insulate pipe."

Page 1116

In a deposition taken to perpetuate his testimony, Jordan stated that he worked part-time for Zimmerman during the 1950s and early 1960s helping [49,820 La.App. 2 Cir. 3] his friend, James Yates (" Yates" ), with asbestos insulation jobs. Jordan assisted Yates on most jobs by mixing asbestos mud. Jordan testified that he poured bags of asbestos into a washtub filled with water and used his hands to mix until the mud reached the correct consistency for Yates to apply. However, Jordan did not think that they used the asbestos mud mixture on the Virginia Hall job. Rather, the work at Virginia Hall, which lasted about two weeks, involved covering water lines during the construction of the building. His testimony indicates that these pipes were covered with a one-piece, foam-like asbestos covering that was slit down the middle so it could be wrapped around the pipes. Jordan testified that the materials for the Virginia Hall job were already at the site whenever they arrived to ...


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