UPDATE: Jury awards millions to family suing natural gas company in ‘first fracking trial in the U.S’
DALLAS – It could be the first judgement of its kind.
A Texas jury awarded $3 million to a North Texas family in a fracking lawsuit.
The family was seeking $9 million from Aruba Petroleum after they claim 22 wells operated by the company exposed them to toxins and made them sick.
Robert and Lisa Parr say their home used to be a sacred place until in 2008, when it became surrounded by gas wells.
Lisa Parr said, “Dizzy, nausea, headaches, all of that and that progressed into a rash over my entire body.”
The symptoms started in 2008 but no one in the family of three could figure out why.
Robert Parr testified that after going to an environmental doctor, they discovered they had several neurotoxins in their blood, which matched chemicals used in natural gas production.
Neighbors started recording what was happening at Aruba Petroleum oil and gas wells in the area, specifically one right next door to the Parr’s home.
The family started documenting their day-to-day health in journals and also tracking health problems with their cattle.
The Parrs sued nine gas companies, which mostly settled out of court.
Lisa Parr said, “They want to shut you up, they want to intimidate you. They want to so whatever they can to not be available out there.”
Aruba Petroleum issued the following statement:
“The facts of the case and the law as applied to those facts do not support the verdict. We contend 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.”
Robert Parr said, “Everybody talks about being a good neighbor. Well, be a good neighbor. Be responsible. Keep it in the pipes.”