Miner's Daughter Alleges Masks Sold by Mine Safety Appliances Failed to Protect Lungs
By Marian Johns
August 7, 2019 - The daughter of a deceased miner who worked in West Virginia coal mines for nearly 40 years has filed suit against the manufacturers and distributors of respirators and dust masks over allegations their defective products led to his lung disease.
Amanda Mines, as executrix of the estate of Thomas Muncy, filed suit in Mingo Circuit Court against Mine Safety Appliances Co. LLC, Eastern States Mine Supply Co. Inc., and Raleigh Mine & Industrial Supply Inc. claiming negligence misrepresentation and breach of implied warranty.
The suit states that Muncy, who began working in the state's coal mines in 1974, died from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The suit alleges that his lung disease and eventual death was a result of his exposure to coal rock and sand dust.
The plaintiff alleges the respirators/dust masks which Muncy used and made and distributed by the defendants failed to stop his exposure to the harmful dust. According to the court filing, the defects in the masks that caused the leakage were "so small" that they went undetected by Muncy, who falsely believed his lungs were being protected.
The plaintiff seeks compensatory and punitive damages as well as attorney fees and litigation costs. She is represented by Jamie Moncus of Hare, Wynn, Newell and Newton in Lexington, Kentucky.
Mingo Circuit Court case number 19-c-86