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More than 50 people pursue asbestos litigation after demolition

More than four dozen people are suing Johnson Controls Inc. and TOCON Holdings LLC for their alleged role in exposing a group of residents to the toxic substance asbestos. Their claim stems from the demolition of a manufacturing plant. In these types of situations, asbestos litigation is often an effective way for South Carolina victims to recover much-needed compensation for damages, including health bills and more.

The manufacturing plant was no longer in use, and the property owner wanted to tear the building down so that he could sell the property to the area school board. The school board was considering the site for a potential softball field. However, demolition bids from Oct. 2009 showed that to demolish the building properly and safely remove the debris, the owner would have to shell out more money than the property was even worth.

Apparently to avoid the financial costs associated with protecting the community at large from asbestos, the owner instead conspired to tear the building down on its own terms. This included using heavy machinery and skipping out on legally required inspections. This process went on for approximately two years, putting those in the nearby community at risk.

The lawsuit claims that both the owner of the plant as well as its former occupant -- Johnson Controls -- knew that it contained asbestos, and yet moved forward with the demolition anyway. Now, people living nearby claim that they were wrongfully exposed to asbestos. They will have to live with this concern for years to come, as symptoms of exposure often take time to develop. For South Carolina victims dealing with similar situations, asbestos litigation is often an effective way to hold negligent parties responsible for their exposure, ensuring not only much-needed compensation, but also protection for other people in the future.

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