1. Archive

Company loses asbestos/cancer suit

The 14-year-old daughter of a Pensacola bricklayer who died in 1984 of cancer will receive $2-million from the manufacturer of a cement mixture that contained asbestos, the plaintiff's lawyer said Monday. A Circuit Court jury in Miami reached the verdict Friday in favor of the estate of Harvey Kavanaugh and against Harbison-Walker, said Miami lawyer Ervin Gonzalez. "This case is significant because it represents the first time that Harbison-Walker has lost an asbestos suit," Gonzalez said. The suit alleged exposure to the Harbison-Walker cement mixture caused Kavanaugh's death from masothelioma, an asbestos-related cancer.Five arrested; cocaine confiscated

MARATHON _ Federal agents and Monroe County deputies raided a lobster trap yard early Sunday and arrested five men caught in the act of unloading 602 pounds of cocaine, a U.S. Customs Service spokesman said. The Customs and Drug Enforcement agents had prior intelligence that the 30-foot lobster boat would be carrying the drug, Customs spokesman Cliff Stallings said. The boat was tracked by air from Andros Island in the Bahamas with the help of the joint U.S. Customs-Coast Guard Command Control and Intelligence center, south of Miami.

Lawmaker asks Bush for $35-million

WASHINGTON _ U.S. Rep. Larry Smith asked President Bush on Monday for $35-million in federal aid for Florida to offset the costs of a new wave of Cuban immigration. Smith, D-Fla., is hoping Bush will release the money from an immigration revolving fund approved in 1986 to help states deal with the financial burdens caused by immigration emergencies. In 1980, approximately 125,000 Cubans arrived in Florida from Cuba's port of Mariel, straining local resources and eventually costing the state $400-million, money he said was never reimbursed by the federal government. The Coast Guard reported Monday that 875 Cuban refugees have survived the dangerous, 90-plus mile passage to Florida this year, compared with 467 in 1990.

This year, too much rain is the problem

Florida Panhandle farmers who sustained a crop-destroying drought in 1990 are getting too much of a good thing this year. Soggy weather is threatening to reduce or damage peanut, cotton, corn and soybean crops. "Unless a miracle comes down from the sky, we're going to take a loss," said Cumuckla farmer Copeland Griswold. Nearby Pensacola has received 44.9 inches for the year through Sunday night, nearly twice the normal rainfall of 23.7 inches.