United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
J. ROSENSTENGEL United States District Judge.
Robert and Mary Hall allege that Mr. Hall was diagnosed with
lung cancer that was caused by exposure to asbestos from
products manufactured by the various Defendants (Doc. 1-1).
The Halls originally filed their case in the Circuit Court
for the Third Judicial Circuit in Madison County, Illinois,
on November 4, 2015, but it was removed to this Court on
December 9, 2015, pursuant to the federal officer removal
statute (Doc. 1; Doc. 148). This matter is currently before
the Court on the Motion to Apply Maritime Law filed by
Defendants Crane Co. and Ingersoll Rand Company (Doc. 132).
Plaintiffs did not file a response to the motion.
party seeking to invoke maritime law must satisfy the
requirements of location and connection with maritime
activity. Scott v. Trump Indiana, Inc., 337 F.3d
939, 943 (7th Cir. 2003) (citing Jerome B. Grubart, Inc.
v. Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Co., 513 U.S. 527, 531
(1995)). The location prong of the test requires that the
injury occurred on navigable waters or, if the injury
occurred on land, it must have been caused by a vessel on
navigable waters. Scott, 337 F.3d at 943. The
connection with maritime activity prong, also known as the
nexus test, requires that the incident involved has a
potentially disruptive impact on maritime commerce and that
the activity giving rise to the incident bears a substantial
relationship to traditional maritime activity.
Scott, 337 F.3d at 943. With respect to the
application of this two-prong test to asbestos claims, the
Court is content to follow the succinct framework set forth
in Conner v. Alfa Laval, Inc., 799 F.Supp.2d 455,
459 (E.D. Pa. 2011):
[M]aritime law govern[s] those claims involving plaintiffs
who were sea-based Navy workers so long as the allegedly
defective product was produced for use on a vessel. Where the
asbestos claims asserted stem from predominantly land-based
Navy work, however, maritime law does not govern even if the
allegedly defective product was produced for use on a vessel.
Plaintiff Robert Hall alleges that he was exposed to
asbestos-containing products while serving in the United
States Navy from 1968 until 1971 (Doc. 1-1). According to
Defendants, Mr. Hall testified at his deposition that he
served in the Navy aboard the USS America for about
two and a half years, cruising to Asia, South America, and
Australia (Doc. 132). Mr. Hall indicated that during his time
aboard the USS America he repaired equipment on the
ship, such as pumps and valves (Doc. 132). Mr. Hall further
testified that the only place he recalled working on or
around Ingersoll Rand pumps and Crane Co. valves was aboard
the USS America (Doc. 132).
the evidence establishes that Mr. Hall performed at least a
portion of his Navy service at sea aboard a Navy vessel. The
evidence further establishes that his job was to maintain
equipment on the ship, which required working with
asbestos-containing pumps and valves manufactured by
Ingersoll Rand and Crane Co. that were essential for the
proper functioning of the ship and were made for that
purpose. Accordingly, maritime law applies to his claims
against those two Defendants. See Conner v. Alfa Laval,
Inc., 799 F.Supp.2d 455, 466-69 (E.D. Pa. 2011).
Motion to Apply Maritime Law filed by Defendants Crane Co.
and Ingersoll Rand Company (Doc. 132) is
IS SO ORDERED.
 The Conner case was part of
MDL 875, which was established in 1991 to consolidate the
avalanche of federal asbestos cases in the Eastern District
of Pennsylvania. Hon. Eduardo C. Robreno, The Federal
Asbestos Product Liability Multidistrict Litigation
(Mdl-875): Black Hole or New Paradigm?, 23 Widener L.J.
97 (2013). In 2008, Judge Eduardo Robreno was designated to
preside over MDL 875. Id. He has decided thousands
of motions and issued hundreds of orders, including the
extensive and thorough order in Conner deciding the
application of maritime law. Id. After twenty years,
180 thousand plus cases, and over ten million claims, the MDL
stopped accepting transfers, signaling the impending end to
the MDL proceedings. Id. In ceasing the transfer of
cases to the MDL, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict
Litigation stated that “the judges presiding over [the
cases that will not be transferred to the MDL] will almost
certainly find useful guidance in the many substantive and
thoughtful rulings that have been issued during the lengthy
course of the Multi district proceedings.” In re
Asbestos Prods. Liability Litig., 830 F.Supp.2d 1377,
1379 (J.P.M.L. 2011).
 The relevant portions of Mr.
Hall's deposition transcript were supposed to be attached
to the motion as Exhibit A, but they were omitted
(see Doc. 132). The Court is relying solely on Crane
Co.'s and Ingersoll Rand's representations about Mr.