Jury hits Caltrans with $12M verdict in valley fever suit

Jan 22, 2016 7:31 PM by News Staff

FAIRFIELD, Calif. (AP) - A Northern California jury has awarded five construction workers $12 million in their lawsuit alleging the state transportation department failed to warn them about a potentially deadly fungus at an excavation site.

The Daily Republic reports Friday that the Solano County jury found the California Department of Transportation concealed the presence of the fungus that was known to be in the soil where the work was done. The crew was doing earth-movement and expanding a culvert in Kern County in 2008. The five sued Caltrans more than six years ago.

Jurors ruled Caltrans employees knew about the risks of valley fever, a debilitating, incurable disease, and that one Caltrans employee deliberately intended to deceive the five workers about the risks of it. A Caltrans spokesman said the agency is "carefully evaluating all of its options for appeal."

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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