West Virginia Record

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Coal miner alleges respirators from Mine Safety Appliances, other companies failed to protect him from dust


By Carrie Bradon | Jun 19, 2019

WILLIAMSON – A Matewan couple is seeking damages from the makers and sellers of respirators over allegations they did not protect the husband from harmful dust while he worked in coal mines.

Ted D. Simpkins and Sheila Simpkins filed a complaint in Mingo Circuit Court against Mine Safety Appliances Co. LLC, 3M Co., American Optical Corp., Moldex-Metric Inc., Raleigh Mine and Industrial Supply Inc., Eastern States Mine Supply Co. and John Doe defendants 1-10 alleging strict liability, negligence and fraud.

The suit states that Ted Simpkins has been a coal miner from 1975 until the present. The suit states that the plaintiff used respirators that were manufactured and sold by the defendants to protect him from harmful dust during his career. The plaintiffs allege that the respirators leaked a harmful amount of dust into the plaintiff's breathing zone, causing him to contract occupational pneumoconiosis.

The plaintiffs are seeking all reasonable sums due, attorney fees and court costs. They are represented by William K. Schwartz in Charleston.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Miki Thompson.

Mingo Circuit Court case number 19-C-53

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