OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Supreme Court has upheld a more than $30 million judgment in favor of a powerline construction company over a 2010 pipeline explosion in Texas.
Dewey-based C&H Power Line Construction claimed in the lawsuit that the explosion killed employee James Neese, severely burned another employee, destroyed equipment and led to the loss of the business, according to the Oklahoman (http://bit.ly/2dND6te ).
In 2013, a jury found two entities belonging to Houston-based Enterprise Products Partners negligent in the accident. The jury also found that Enterprise employees failed to mark the pipeline after they were notified of the intention to dig in the area.
Enterprise Products Operating LLC and Enterprise Texas Pipeline LLC had appealed the ruling, objecting to jury instructions.
Oklahoma’s top court on Tuesday upheld the jury verdict, awarding the construction company $26 million in actual damages, $1 million in punitive damages and almost $3.5 million in interest.
“We hold that the trial court did not make any error requiring reversal or remand,” the ruling stated.
C&H was in the process of selling their company when the explosion occurred. The court ruling said that the company claimed the accident led to the sale of the company “at substantially less than its value at the time of the accident.”
Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com