Two lawsuits against trucking companies that haul water to hydraulic fracturing sites have been settled in Texas costing more than $11 and a half million combined.
The first accident occurred on June 22, 2011, when a semitrailer blocked the right of way on a state highway near Carthage, Texas. Mike Allen crashed into a heavy truck owned by Coraopolis, Penn.-based Heckmann Water Resources. The truck was stopped on the road without turn signals or flashing lights.
The attorney for Allen says his client was no longer able to financially support his wife and young daughter because of injuries sustained in the wreck. On June 20, a court approved a settlement in which Heckmann agreed to pay Allen and his family $8.7 million, which is believed to be the largest lawsuit settlement in Panola County history.
The second settlement stemmed from a Sept. 11, 2011, truck crash near Weatherford, Texas, that resulted in 32 year-old Arron Gomas suffering brain damage, according to his attorney. Gomas broadsided a tractor-trailer owned by Weatherford-based Bob Phillips Trucking, also called Phillips Water Hauling, as the truck's driver attempted to make an illegal U-turn shortly before midnight.
The case was on behalf of Gomas and his family for $3 million on June 13. The $3 million award was the maximum payout available from the trucking firm's insurance carrier.