Common Sense Canadian

Texas family awarded $3 million for fracking damages

PostedMay 30, 2014 by in International
Texas family awarded $3 million for fracking damages

Lisa and Bob Parr (Photo: Wise County Messenger / Joe Duty)

Read this April 23 story from the LA Times on the groundbreaking award of nearly $3 million in damages to a Texas family from fracking activity near their home.

In a landmark legal victory that centered on fracking, a middle-class north Texas ranching family won nearly $3 million from a big natural gas company whose drilling, they contend, caused years of sickness, killed pets and livestock, and forced them out of their home for months.

Tuesday’s $2.95-million civil verdict by a six-person Dallas jury is thought to be the first of its kind in the nation. Other landowners have sued over drilling and reached settlements, but legal experts think this is the first jury verdict.

Robert and Lisa Parr filed suit against Aruba Petroleum Inc. in 2011, contending that its operations near their land had contaminated the air and harmed their health. Their lawsuit has been closely watched by both critics and supporters of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which involves pumping water laced with chemicals into shale formations to unlock trapped oil and gas.

“I am just overwhelmed,” Lisa Parr said in a telephone interview Wednesday. “I feel like I am just this little bitty girl, this little family who just beat the biggest, most powerful industry in the world.”

Aruba Petroleum, based in Plano, Texas, said it had done nothing wrong and had operated within safe and legal guidelines. “We contended the plaintiffs were neither harmed by the presence of our drilling operations nor was the value of their property diminished because of our natural gas development,” Aruba said in a statement.

The company said it would appeal.



About the Author

Common Sense Canadian



    I was exposed to chemical vapors and other haz mat from an old rail and coal yard that the politicians and favored developers dug up next to my house for a townhouse project. It had all the red flags for a brownfield. I because very ill when they started demolition and dug holes in 2006. I am still ill. I reported the problems and instead of helping and removing me from my house as 3 doctors demanded, a deliberate campaign to attack me and commit crimes against me commenced. I was ill, getting older and alone and no money and the highest levels of Philadelphia and State retaliated against me for years, even in the last couple of months, terrorizing me with all manner of hate crimes. I am still paying for a house I can’t live in , 1st due to haz mat and then continuous crimes against me. Over the years I have connected with many who are ill from various forms of hax mat and chemical exposure, including fracking. These people are suffering deeply and even dying. These ranchers were lucky enough to afford a lawyer, but most people are not. Also many are too ill to even try and the corruption of the politics and big companies can be deadly. I was finally able to get out as crimes against me were increasing a year ago but I am still ill and still affected by the abuse Philadelphia commits against me. On June 5, 2013, 6 people died in a demolition accident on Market Street. Luckily I was gone by then. It was so traumatizing because I have clear evidence that the city had 1st rate demolition protocol for years and had to watch the same politicians who harmed me get up on TV and lie. I’m still struggling with the effects of the poisons and terrorism against me. Many are suffering the same. The denial of politicians and companies that they are not killing people is cruel and criminal. There are too many of us who suffer the same illnesses from exposure and get the same run around. Most people are too ill and their lives are destroyed so bad that they can’t fight back or even speak out due to the terror tactics of the politicians and companies. People had to document and tell their story the best they can. The evidence and overwhelming number of people whose lives are destroyed and taken by many kinds of pollutants and corruption is growing into an epidemic. Soon there will be no more possibility of denial and manipulation by the companies and politicians.


    One wonders how long the appeals process will drag on through the courts.
    A state court victory, while significant, doesnt set a precedent for the entire country.
    Until victims of fracking pollution win a case in US Federal court AND win their case in the US Supreme court.
    This polluting will still occur.

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