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Workplace Mold Health Problems
Learn all about
mold at work at
Court Finds Toxic Mold Caused
Worker’s Health Problems on
Nov. 6, 2007
Nathan Cameron worked for Merisel Americas, Inc., a computer
hardware and software company. Between December 1998 and April 2000 he
worked in the company's Cary
office. This office had a history of water leaks and moisture problems.
Cameron noticed that his windows leaked when it rained and that the walls,
ceilings, and carpets in his office had been damaged by water and mold. In
1999, the office next door to Cameron's flooded, increasing the water damage
to the carpets and the mold on the walls.
While he was working in the Cary
facility, Cameron started to have trouble with his balance and vision. In
the fall of 1999 a doctor determined that he had developed irreversible
damage to his inner ear and vestibular system, resulting in a permanent loss
of balance. In 2002 Cameron and his wife sued Merisel, claiming that
Cameron's workplace was contaminated with toxic molds and that its failure
to correct the problem or warn Cameron caused his permanent injuries.
After numerous pre-trial activities, the case went to trial in Wake County
in March 2006. The jury found that Merisel was liable for damages to
Cameron. It awarded him $1,600,000 for his injury and awarded his wife
$200,000 for her loss of his company and services. Merisel appealed to the
North Carolina Court of Appeals.
Merisel argued that Cameron had not proven that his illness was caused by
exposure to toxic molds at work and that the trial court therefore should
have dismissed the case. The court disagreed, finding that Cameron had
produced ample evidence of the Merisel's mold having caused his problems.
According to Cameron's account, before Merisel purchased the facility in
1998, it had received inspection reports indicating that it had moisture
problems. A number of Cameron's co-workers claimed that they had various
respiratory problems and complained about the mold to Merisel's maintenance
supervisor, Brian Goldsworthy. Goldsworthy notified company administrators,
but the mold problem continued. Goldsworthy reportedly expressed that he
thought the complaining employees were trying to avoid work.
In 1999, air quality tests confirmed that mold was present in the building.
After these test results, Merisel replaced Goldsworthy with another
supervisor, who was entrusted with building maintenance and specifically
instructed to solve the moisture problems in the Cary building. In January
2000 a Merisel employee lodged a complaint about mold and moisture with NC
OSHA. In March, tests revealed the presence of Stachbotrys mold in Cameron's
Cameron's health had been fine before he went to work at Merisel, but it
quickly deteriorated while he worked in the Cary facility. Cameron's doctor
diagnosed him with bilateral vestibular dysfunction. The doctor testified
that he had considered other causes of ear diseases, such as brain tumors,
skull fractures, chemotherapy, and various other factors that can affect
vestibular function, but had ruled them out. In his opinion, Cameron's
condition was caused by poisoning of the ears by exposure to some toxin. He
did not learn that Cameron had been exposed to toxic molds until after
making this initial diagnosis. Once he heard about the presence of
Stachybotrys mold in Cameron's office, he concluded that the loss of
Cameron's vestibular function was, in his best medical judgment, due to
exposure to a mycotoxin from the fungus.
Cameron also brought in two other expert witnesses, an expert in
environmental medicine and a mold expert, who also testified that the mold
at the Cary facility presented a health hazard and that mold was most likely
the cause of Cameron's illness. The court held that this was more than ample
evidence that the mold at Merisel had caused Cameron's problems. It affirmed
the trial court's decision.
v. Merisel Properties, Inc.,
Court of Appeals of North Carolina, No. COA07-54 (11/06/07)
OSHA requires employers to protect their workers from a variety of hazards,
known and unknown. An employer who knows about a hazard should address it
immediately. It appears clear that if the supervisor and administrators who
received the employees' complaints about the mold had responded quickly and
adequately, the company could have avoided paying such hefty damages.
Also visit: Employer Mold
Workplace Q & A
Fox News Employees Sue
Over Alleged Mold
Associated Press, Washingtonpost.com, Feb. 1, 2006
NEW YORK---Two Fox News employees have filed a lawsuit alleging they
were sickened by toxic molds and pesticides in a building where some of
the network's top shows are produced.
The lawsuit, just filed in Supreme Court in Manhattan, alleges the
employees fell ill in the building where "The O'Reilly Factor" and "At
Large with Geraldo Rivera" are produced, as well as "Hannity and Colmes"
and "Dayside." It seeks unspecified damages from Fox News and the
building's management company.
The employees said in court papers that the molds and the
"inappropriate" use of cleaning agents and pesticides caused headaches,
dizziness, weakness, anxiety, and blurred vision.
Fox News spokeswoman Irena Briganti said in a statement that the
allegations "are baseless and lack merit." She said the federal
Occupational, Safety and Health Administration had declined to
investigate, and onsite probe by the state's Department of Environmental
Conservation had "fully resolved" the matter.
and Asthma Health Problems
Q & A
My father is currently working at a
place where he is constantly breathing mold spores. It was just last week he
was diagnosed with having asthma by a medical doctor. The place of
employment will not fix the problem due to obvious money problems. What
should we do medically and lawfully?
[July 12, 2003]
In view of your father's working
in a moldy work place and his asthma health problems, the
obvious first step should be to seek employment elsewhere in a
mold safe work environment. I realize that good jobs are hard to
find today, but maintaining good health is also important. If
your father's place of employment was on fire, he would not
hesitate to run out of the building to save himself. If the
employer's building is on fire from mold infestation, your
father should be just as motivated to get out NOW. Mold in the
work place that is ignored by an employer aware of the mold
problem is a safety violation under the OSHA law [U.S.
Occupational Safety and Health Administration and its
corresponding sister state OSHA agencies]. If your father
is interested in pursuing his legal rights, he needs to have the work place
inspected and mold tested at his expense to obtain mold laboratory results
that document the mold problem at work. Use do it yourself mold test kits
available at a large hardware, home improvement, or safety store.
Your father then take his medical records and the mold test
results to a local environmental attorney to discover what legal
rights he may have against his employer----read the indepth ebook
Mold Legal Guide. As
far as medical treatment options, he should be examined by a
neurologist for possible brain damage, by an allergist for
possible sinus mold growth, and by a pulmonary physician [lung
doctor] for lung mold growths. Possible medical diagnostic tools
include mri scans [brain and sinus's], nasal and sinus
samplings, lung x-ray, lung biopsy, and mold antibody blood
More pages on Employer Liability are at:
| Mold-Problem |
| Home Builder Mold
| Lender Mold Lawsuit
| Insurance Claim
| Landlord Liability
| Legal Q & A
| School Mold
| Texas Victory
| Texas Mold License
| Cal Mold Law
Whether or not you
are a mold victim, or a present or future mold plaintiff or mold
Mold Legal Guide will help you and your lawyer to deal
with and to survive financially the immense and complicated legal
problems arising from mold issues that are commonly arising in today's
lawsuit-crazy world in such business relationships as: landlord and
tenant, employer and employee, property seller and buyer, realtor or
real estate agent and seller or buyer, mortgage lender and debtor, home
builder and buyer, and contractor and customer.
Get both the landlord
attention and action that you and your family deserve by using the 3
step [3 separate notices if
necessary] after you have documented the mold infestation in your
apartment, or rental house or condominium by using
yourself mold test kits available at a large hardware, home improvement,
or safety store.
or hire a
Certified Mold Inspector.
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