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Horvitz & Levy is a solutions-based firm focused on appellate success. We are distinguished by our commitment to responsive service and on-going innovation in the areas of civil appellate litigation, amicus curiae support, and trial strategy consultation.

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Horvitz & Levy LLP successfully represented Southern California Gas Company on appeal from a judgment in a failure-to-warn product liability case. The plaintiffs were two plumbers who were injured as a result of a natural gas explosion. They were working on a water heater in a confined space and allowed vapor to escape from the gas line. They alleged they did not know the vapor was gas because it had no odor. They claimed the gas utility was liable on a product liability theory for failure to warn that the odorant, which is added to the gas as a warning agent, could fade in new steel pipes. The jury found for the plaintiffs and awarded $12.6 million in damages, including $10 million in punitive damages.

In a published decision, the California Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District, reversed with directions to enter judgment for the Southern California Gas Company. The Court of Appeal held the plaintiffs failed to prove their injuries were caused by the absence of a warning about “odor fade” which the plaintiffs said the utility should have issued to trade groups and the public-at-large, since they presented no proof such a warning would actually have reached them.