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Grant v. Foster Wheeler, LLC

Supreme Court of Maine

June 7, 2016

PATRICIA GRANT et al.
v.
FOSTER WHEELER, LLC, et al.

          Argued: April 5, 2016

         Business and Consumer Docket docket number CV-2013-2

         On the briefs:

          Kevin M. Noonan, Esq., McTeague Higbee, PA, Topsham, for appellants Patricia Grant and the Estate of Edward Grant

          Kip Adams, Esq., and Christopher Tauro, Esq., Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, LLP, Boston, Massachusetts, for appellee New England Insulation Company

          Steven F. Wright, Esq., Wright & Associates, P.A., Portland, for appellees Foster Wheeler, LLC, and Imo Industries, Inc.

          Steven F. Wright, Esq., Wright & Associates, P.A., Portland, and Laurie J. Hepler, Esq., Carroll Burdick & McDonough LLP, San Francisco, California, for appellee Warren Pumps, LLC

         At oral argument:

          Kevin M. Noonan, Esq., for appellants Patricia Grant and the Estate of Edward Grant

          Kip Adams, Esq., for appellee New England Insulation Company

          Steven F. Wright, Esq., for appellees Foster Wheeler, LLC, Warren Pumps, LLC, and Imo Industries, Inc.

          Laurie J. Hepler, Esq., Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland LLP, San Francisco, California, for appellee Warren Pumps, LLC

          Panel: SAUFLEY, C.J., and ALEXANDER, MEAD, GORMAN, JABAR, and HJELM, JJ.

          ALEXANDER, J.

         [¶1] Patricia Grant and the Estate of Edward Grant (the Estate) appeal from summary judgments entered against them in the Business and Consumer Docket (Murphy, J.) on their complaint for negligence; failure to warn of defective, unreasonably dangerous goods; and loss of consortium. The judgments were entered upon the motions of New England Insulation Company (NEI); Foster Wheeler, LLC; Warren Pumps, LLC; and Imo Industries, Inc. Because the Estate was unable to produce evidence to establish a prima facie case that any of the named defendants' products were a proximate cause of the injuries, we affirm the summary judgments.

         I. CASE HISTORY

         [¶2] Viewing the summary judgment records in the light most favorable to the Estate, the following facts are undisputed for purposes of summary judgment. See Remmes v. Mark Travel Corp., 2015 ME 63, ¶ 18, 116 A.3d 466 (stating the rule that on review of entry of a summary judgment, the record is considered in the light most favorable to the nonprevailing party).

         [¶3] Edward Grant worked for Bath Iron Works from August 19, 1964, to June 9, 1970, and again from August 24, 1978, to February 1, 1994. During Grant's first period of employment, asbestos was a common component of the insulation and other materials used at Bath Iron Works, including use in the construction and renovation of ships.

         [¶4] In the course of his employment, Grant worked in a variety of positions, including as a ship cleaner. Cleaning included sweeping up debris- sometimes including asbestos-that resulted from construction and maintenance activities. Grant worked as a ship ...


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