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Thread: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

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    Default Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    I just read this article and the contractor should have potholed the markings to verify that the gas was where the locator had marked it. I would hate to be the locator which mis-marked this gas.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Everyone's fault but the guy digging.... i may have heard this story more than once. funny how that always happens. Woups i cut it... not my fault!

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    I agree with Kaine .....it is never the contractors fault?????? It is fair to say that there have been in the past and will be in the future bad markings.......but in the end if the contractor would pot hole the mark a lot of this (aint my fault) will stop happening !!!! all I am saying is there has to be a better way !!!!
    daman1 likes this.
    wise men talk because they have something to say and fools because they have to say something....plato

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    Mke
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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    ditto. reading what is out there on this incident, I still haven't heard (or better yet, seen) anything rock solid. We just have the typical "he said, she said" situation.

    Something like this happens, contract locators are screwed. We can take the blame (everyone in their brother can sue the locating company) but we can't dish it out( the locator is in a weird position where they can't really sue anyone for anything more then defemation or liable, maybe slander, but no real damages or loss).

    I know that sound a little off, but when big incidents happen. After the initial news reports, the only thing else you see is when the lawsuits come out. No one will know if that line was marked properly or not.

    Maybe Wingfoot, but other then him no one.

    mke

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    If this guy is a bore crew foreman, why is he showing up onsite an hour after a hit? How far off were the gas marks? Why did these guys think they were in the clear? The fact that this is a CATV bore crew, and if I am reading this right, working in the street, is setting off all sorts of alarms here. So sorry to here this guy was burned so badly, there are few things worse in life than living in a burn unit.

    This is a press release most likely put together by someone in the serving law firm, or someone they hired to put it together. Facts are where it's at, and until then this is nothing but ball tossing.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Forget the locators marks or the contractor not pot hole the gas,,, what is the issue is why wasn't the gas shut off by then, an hour or so?, and why was there still anybody anywhere near this location much less the bore crew was still there? Sounds like the first responders hold most of the blame, ie the gas company. SOP around here dictates the gas company first on site is in charge and everyone is evacuated until site or damage location is "made safe". Yes there is responsibility on the locate marks and what the contractor should do, but that would be the argument if it were any other utility hit. Gas brings out the big guns, but always remember that where there is a gas damage, only gas company personnel and fire officials should be near.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    i had a gas main(2"PL) cut on me in February. On a state highway. Got the call from contractor at 2:30pm gas company didnt show until 5:30 pm. gas crew got there at 7:00pm the gas flow wasnt shut down until 5:15am the next day. there reasoning behind it was it would be too many relights because it was a one way feed. it was a "T" intersection which the gas "T" at the intersection also. hows that for food for thought. oh yeah it was marked correctly. and no one was evacuated either!!!
    Last edited by union_YES; April 24th, 2013 at 07:19 PM.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    that what union just said ...is how life really is out here in the utility world.....it 's a shame that more can not be done !
    wise men talk because they have something to say and fools because they have to say something....plato

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Quote Originally Posted by union_YES View Post
    i had a gas main(2"PL) cut on me in February. On a state highway. Got the call from contractor at 2:30pm gas company didnt show until 5:30 pm. gas crew got there at 7:00pm the gas flow wasnt shut down until 5:15am the next day. there reasoning behind it was it would be too many relights because it was a one way feed. it was a "T" intersection which the gas "T" at the intersection also. hows that for food for thought. oh yeah it was marked correctly. and no one was evacuated either!!!
    This is how it was explained to me: When estimating the cost of a damage, a formula is used to measure the amount of gas that escapes. The size and pressure of the line and the amount of time before it was capped. That cost is sent to the at fault party for payment. With a system like that there's no financial incentive for the utility company to respond quickly unless there's a public threat. It actually makes better sense for them to take their time.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Whether the marks were off, or the contractor did not pothole, or the gas company did not respond in time, my question is was that a locatable pipe? Was it installed correctly? Was the tracer wire intact?
    Sometimes the proof is not always going to be the answer that is needed. I think it should be mandatory for anything put in the ground to be tested and ensured that it is locatable. If it wasn't installed correctly, how is someone supposed to locate something if say the tracer wire is stretched and broken halfway through the run?
    I'm just saying, sometimes the blame should be on installation rather than the people who are there after the fact.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    I am a bit confused, I am going to have to look back at some of the earlier news reports about this explosion. I was sure I read an article where the marks were correct and the contractor pot holed and found the gas at 28". Their machine said that their bore head was at 37" but it was actually at 28".

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    The first thing a lawyer does is cast blame anywhere away from the client that they can, then they file for negligence on every party possibly involved except the party they represent, in hope of an early victory, an admission leads to a quick settlement and all the other suits can be dismissed as easily as they were filed. They truly dread when they actually have to take these cases to court without a clear cut responsible party, they want no part of the investigations, all they can ever do is hurt them.

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Quote Originally Posted by Mke View Post
    After the initial news reports, the only thing else you see is when the lawsuits come out. No one will know if that line was marked properly or not.

    Maybe Wingfoot, but other then him no one.

    mke
    Greetings mke - The Missouri Public Service Commission, which oversees utilities, launched an investigation into the blast. Commission Chairman Kevin Gunn said preliminary information indicates that gas pipelines had been properly marked. The 2" plastic gas main in question was potholed and spotted by Heartland Midwest; the company that the plaintiff Mike Tanner worked for at the time of the blast. The gas main was located 6" away from the locator's yellow mark and 4" away from the gas main's tracer wire. It's going to be anyone's guess what financial liability the presiding judge will assess to all parties involved. Maybe the plaintiff is hoping the judge will think 6" off target is a sloppy job and USIC needs to be spanked........... just sayin'.

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    Mke
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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Quote Originally Posted by Wingfoot View Post
    Greetings mke - The Missouri Public Service Commission, which oversees utilities, launched an investigation into the blast. Commission Chairman Kevin Gunn said preliminary information indicates that gas pipelines had been properly marked. The 2" plastic gas main in question was potholed and spotted by Heartland Midwest; the company that the plaintiff Mike Tanner worked for at the time of the blast. The gas main was located 6" away from the locator's yellow mark and 4" away from the gas main's tracer wire. It's going to be anyone's guess what financial liability the presiding judge will assess to all parties involved. Maybe the plaintiff is hoping the judge will think 6" off target is a sloppy job and USIC needs to be spanked........... just sayin'.

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    Thanks for the info Wing. I know around here it is protocol to name everyone in a civil lawsuit first before the truth really comes out. Most big corporations will throw money at the situation just to get it out of the press.

    With them potholing the line, they are kinda screwed either way.

    I just had a similar situation on a job site a few months back. The bore crew potholed all my marks. Verified depth. They still wound up hitting a 14kv feeder to a kinder morgan facility. The first thing they did was accuse me of not marking the primary. I was on vacation at the time, and our risk team is headed by a project manager I've worked with for years. He told them he was there to make sure everyone was safe and to get the facility back up and running. They will worry about fault later. He then asked them to clean up the dird by the recieving pit and low and behold..... Red paint directly over the primary.

    mke

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    Default Re: Lawsuit alleges bad markings caused blast at JJs

    Quote Originally Posted by Wingfoot View Post
    Greetings mke - The Missouri Public Service Commission, which oversees utilities, launched an investigation into the blast. Commission Chairman Kevin Gunn said preliminary information indicates that gas pipelines had been properly marked. The 2" plastic gas main in question was potholed and spotted by Heartland Midwest; the company that the plaintiff Mike Tanner worked for at the time of the blast. The gas main was located 6" away from the locator's yellow mark and 4" away from the gas main's tracer wire. It's going to be anyone's guess what financial liability the presiding judge will assess to all parties involved. Maybe the plaintiff is hoping the judge will think 6" off target is a sloppy job and USIC needs to be spanked........... just sayin'.

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    I doubt it Wing. This is just the usual "Tora, tora,tora" B.S. you see when someone is filing a wrongful death/injury lawsuit. And it is good to know that the USIC tech responsible was accurate, although I know from experience that they tend to keep their best techs on these jobs, and that's how it should be. Sounds an awful lot like an operator/equipment malfunction that resulted in someone thinking the borepath was somewhere other than it actually was.

    And as Mke pointed out, if they had this potholed, they really don't have much of a leg to stand on. 4-6 inches deviation is more than acceptable for this kind of job, if you ask me.

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