Truck Manufacturers Not Liable - Plaintiff Files Voluntary Dismissal
December 1, 2006
The plaintiffs are residents of the San Pedro area, near the Port of Los Angeles, who alleged that they suffered various personal injuries and a decrease in value of their property because of increased air pollution in their neighborhood as a result of recent expansion of the Port. The plaintiffs named as defendants numerous shipping operations, cruise lines, port operators, trucking companies and diesel truck and engine manufacturers, among other entities.
Partner Scott L. Hengesbach of Murchison & Cumming represented Freightliner, LLC, a manufacturer of large diesel trucks, in this matter. M&C, through the assistance of Adrian J. Barrio, took the lead in preparing and filing a demurrer which attacked the entirety of the Complaint on the grounds that diesel truck manufacturers could not be held liable to the plaintiffs for their alleged exposure to diesel exhaust. The essence of the demurrer was that truck manufacturers could not be held liable for unspecified exposures of the plaintiffs to unidentified vehicles allegedly traveling near the plaintiffs' residence. Other truck manufacturers, such as Mack and Volvo, joined the demurrer and/or filed similar demurrers.
Rather than attempt to oppose these demurrers, plaintiffs elected to dismiss its claims against all diesel truck and engine manufacturers and proceed against the balance of the defendants.