Six lawsuit are now pending in West fertilizer explosion

29 April 2013 17:48 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)—A total of six lawsuits related to the explosion at a fertilizer distributor in West, Texas have been filed as of Monday morning in the McLennan County district court.

The lawsuits includes individuals and insurance companies seeking relief and damages from the 17 April blast that killed 14 and injured 200 others as well as causing an estimated $100m in insurable losses from the destruction of homes and business in a 37-block radius surrounding the site of West Fertilizer.

The most recent filing from the 170th State District Court comes from plaintiffs Carmen Bridges and Brent Wayne Bridges who are family members of West volunteer firefighter Morris Bridges. Bridges, 41, was among the first responders to the fire at West Fertilizer and one of the first victims of the deadly explosion.

The six suits name as defendants West Fertilizer and its parent company, Adair Grain Inc, which is owned by lifelong West resident Donald Adair. After releasing an initial statement expressing his remorse and sympathy for the victims, Adair has refused to speak about the incident and the company spokesperson has said there will be no comments from Adair or any other employee while the investigation continues.

As of this weekend, residents were being allowed to return to their homes in the most heavily damaged sections of town but only under limited hours to retrieve personal belongings and other important items.

City officials said that most of the dwellings in the hardest hit area are uninhabitable and likely will be torn down once the investigation is deemed completed. At last count, it is estimated there are 350 homes that were severely impacted by the explosion.

By Mark Milam