8th Circuit upholds dismissal of ExxonMobil pipeline case | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, May 11, 2017

8th Circuit upholds dismissal of ExxonMobil pipeline case

Posted By on Thu, May 11, 2017 at 1:28 PM

THE MAYFLOWER SPILL: another court decision. - BRIAN CHILSON
  • Brian Chilson
  • THE MAYFLOWER SPILL: another court decision.

The U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals today upheld
a lower court decision to dismiss a lawsuit by all property owners along the easement for the Pegasus pipeline, now owned by ExxonMobil, which runs from Texas to Illinois and ruptured in 2013 in Mayflower, Ark.

After initially approving a class action, federal Judge Brian Miller reversed his decison and granted summary judgment to the oil company.

Property owners were demanding repair, replacement or removal. They asserted a breach of contract on easement purchases because events had proved the line was unsafe. Miller decided the characteristics varied widely and so each claim had to be examined individually. Landowners said ExxonMobil had so neglected maintenance that it should be treated as a single unit. Among other things, Exxon increased the flow and began shipping heavy crude from Canadian tar sands through the line for the break. A good summary here of legal arguments.

In rejecting class action status, Miller left only four Arkansas plaintiffs, Rudy and Betty Webb and Arnez and Charletha Harper. He dismissed their claim because he said the easement contract, under Arkansas law, didn't include a duty for the oil company on maintenance of the line. Plus, the plaintiffs  conceded that the oil company had not caused any damage to their specific property.

The court also rejected a claim that new evidence argued for reopening of the case.

ExxonMobil has settled one lawsuit over specific spill damage for $5 million. Other legal actions pend.

Tags: , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store



Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Al Gore remembers Dale Bumpers

    Former Vice President Al Gore, a former U.S. Senate colleague of Dale Bumpers, sent a statement on Bumpers' death Friday:
    • Jan 3, 2016
  • Today in Trump: Obstruction of justice anyone?

    It's the New York Times with the news today. Fired FBI Director James Comey kept notes of his talks with Donald Trump. A memo he wrote in February after a meeting with Trump said the president asked him to shut down the investigation into Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser.
    • May 16, 2017
  • In Little Rock, Marco Rubio sells American exceptionalism

    This is Rubio's axiomatic answer to Donald Trump's insistence that he and he alone will Make America Great Again: America is the greatest, always has been.
    • Feb 22, 2016

Most Shared

  • So much for a school settlement in Pulaski County

    The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's Cynthia Howell got the scoop on what appears to be coming upheaval in the Pulaski County School District along with the likely end of any chance of a speedy resolution of school desegregation issues in Pulaski County.
  • Riverfest calls it quits

    The board of directors of Riverfest, Arkansas's largest and longest running music festival, announced today that the festival will no longer be held. Riverfest celebrated its 40th anniversary in June. A press release blamed competition from other festivals and the rising cost of performers fees for the decision.
  • Football for UA Little Rock

    Andrew Rogerson, the new chancellor at UA Little Rock, has decided to study the cost of starting a major college football team on campus (plus a marching band). Technically, it would be a revival of football, dropped more than 60 years ago when the school was a junior college.
  • Turn to baseball

    When the world threatens to get you down, there is always baseball — an absorbing refuge, an alternate reality entirely unto itself.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Saturday open line

    • One of the loveliest Hollywood evenings ever, comes to a crashing end when I make…

    • on July 23, 2017
  • Re: Saturday open line

    • Durango, To my great sadness, Benji decided to step back from full time work at…

    • on July 22, 2017
  • Re: Saturday open line

    • Maybe Congress has found a tiny little wringer for Donnie's tiny little member. (Baker doesn't…

    • on July 22, 2017



© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation