Capone v. Ormet Corp
In this case, a plaintiff lost control of his vehicle on a rainy day, running off the road and striking a steel conveyor support in front of Ormet Corporation's alumina plant. At trial, the plaintiff asserted that the operations of Ormet Corp. placed a "slippery red dust" on the roadway which caused the plaintiff to lose control of his vehicle. The trial court assessed fault as 70% to Ormet, 20% to DOTD, and 10% to the plaintiff, and awarded the plaintiff $798,748.11. Mr. Ryan subsequently enrolled as appellate counsel for Ormet, and he was able to demonstrate to the appellate court that the trial court was clearly wrong in finding that "fugitive red dust" was a cause of the accident. The 25-page opinion held that the plaintiff was solely at fault in causing the accident, and Ormet was absolved of liability.
Capone v. Ormet Corp., 2001-0060 (La.App. 1 Cir. 6/21/02).