Jury Holds Peanut Co. Liable for Employee’s Peanut Dust Inhalation
A jury in Alabama has found Golden Peanut Co. liable for an accident causing an employee welder to inhale peanut dust, resulting in a pneumonia infection and subsequent lung transplant. Smith v. Golden Peanut Co., No. 14-0999 (M.D. Ala., jury verdict filed January 15, 2015). The welder was apparently inside a grain elevator when a truck began dumping peanuts into the shaft, causing the peanut dust to become “so thick in the work area of the elevator pit shaft that [the welder] could not see his hand in front of his face.” He was then diagnosed with pneumonia, required the use of an oxygen tank and became unable to work. In its verdict, the jury concluded the welder could recover $718,113.25 for his negligence claim. See Law360, January 15, 2016.