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Torts keyed to Robertson
Satterfield v. Breeding Insulation Co.
Citation:Supreme Court of Tennessee, 2008. 266 S.W.3d 347.
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- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
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- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
The Defendant, Breeding Insulation Co. (Alcoa), was an international manufacturer of aluminum and aluminum products. The Defendant used materials containing asbestos in many of its manufacturing operations. The Defendant was aware since the 1930s that asbestos was a highly dangerous subject and had closely monitored research about its dangers. In the 1940s, the Defendant became aware that the air in its factories contained asbestos fibers in high quantities and that its employees were regularly exposed to these fibers on a daily basis.
In the 1960s, the Defendant became aware that dangers posed by asbestos went beyond just its employees that were in direct contact with the materials containing asbestos. They became aware that people living near facilities with high use of these materials are experiencing higher disease rates as were the family members of its employees who were being exposed to asbestos fibers regularly because of the fibers on their work clothes.
In 1972, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) made regulations prohibiting employees who had been exposed to asbestos from taking their work clothes home to be laundered. Tests showed that levels of asbestos fibers on the workers’ clothes were very high. In 1973, the Plaintiff, Satterfield, started working at one of the Defendant’s facilities. He worked at the facility for roughly eight years and his work resulted in exposure to high levels of asbestos fibers on a daily basis.
The Defendant failed to educate the Plaintiff and the rest of its employees on the OSHA regulations or the risks regarding asbestos or how to handle containing it. The Defendant specifically failed to inform the Plaintiff or its other employees of the dangers of the dangers associated with wearing home their asbestos-contaminated work clothes. Additionally, the Defendant failed to give its employees protective coveralls or to offer to launder its employees work clothes at its facility.
The Plaintiff’s daughter, Amanda Satterfield, was born in 1979. Amanda contracted mesothelioma from exposure throughout her life to asbestos fibers on her father’s work clothes. Amanda died from mesothelioma at the age of 25. Amanda originally brought suit, but her father stepped in on her behalf after her death.
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