According to Fox News, the family of actor Ed Lauter has filed a lawsuit against CBS and General Electric (the company that at one point owned NBC) alleging that Lauter was exposed to asbestos while filming television shows for the networks. A claim was also reportedly filed against Ford Motor Co. alleging Lauter was exposed to asbestos through automobile parts.
Lauter was reportedly diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma in May 2013. He died at age 74 fewer than six months later, in October. Mesothelioma is a rare, fatal cancer that has been linked to asbestos exposure. The latency period can last decades between the time of exposure and the time of diagnosis.
Lauter had worked in television and movies since 1971. Among his credits were roles in television shows such as Charlie’s Angels, Magnum P.I., and ER. He was also in films such as The Artist and Seabiscuit.
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Olsen’s family alleged it was his exposure to asbestos on construction sites as a youth that caused his mesothelioma.
Olsen was a member of the Los Angeles Rams’ “Fearsome Foursome” in the 1960s. He also worked as a broadcaster and an actor following his time in the NFL.
People who are exposed to asbestos without proper protection face a risk of developing mesothelioma, asbestosis and lung cancer, all diseases that currently have no cure. Lawsuits have been filed against companies that manufacture asbestos, companies that use asbestos products and employers who allegedly failed to properly warn their employees about the risks of asbestos or protect them from those risks.