Crane Co, a U.S.-based industrial conglomerate that supplies payment and merchandising technology to the gaming industry, says it is “disappointed” with a U.S. court ruling ordering it to pay approximately US$6.7 million.
The New York State Court of Appeals said the money was due as the result of litigation relating to asbestos, the firm said in a press statement issued on Tuesday.
“Crane Co never manufactured asbestos-containing products, and it believes that all of its products were safe when used as intended. Consequently, Crane Co will continue to vigorously defend itself against asbestos cases, consistent with its past practices,” the firm said in its statement.
The company added: “We are disappointed by the court’s ruling, which is in conflict with those made by courts in other states, as well as on the federal level, addressing ‘duty to warn’ standards for equipment manufacturers who did not make asbestos products.”
Crane Co said in its latest quarterly results that it was a defendant in cases filed in numerous state and federal courts “alleging injury or death as a result of exposure to asbestos”.
Of the 40,649 pending claims as of March 31, approximately 18,400 claims were pending in New York, the firm said.
In Tuesday’s statement, Crane Co said the New York State Court of Appeals “adopted a new test that considers ‘economic necessity’ in determining a manufacturer’s duty to warn about the potential hazards of third party products used in combination with its own product”.
“This new test will now have to be interpreted and applied by the lower courts in New York,” the firm added.
Crane Co in April reported a 7.6-percent increase in net income for the three months ended March 31 compared with a year earlier.
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Vice-chairman and chief executive at Macau casino operator SJM Holdings