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Pipeline Explosion Lawsuit Reaches Settlement

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Northern Natural Gas Company of Omaha, Nebraska sued DeRocher Construction of Le Mars, Iowa after a pipeline explosion in Hinton on April 25, 2012.  The explosion occurred when two DeRocher workers installing drainage tile struck the underground pipeline.  DeRocher failed to have the underground pipeline located and marked prior to digging, leading to an initial fine of $20,000 assessed by the Iowa Attorney General’s Office.  Northern sought $439,000 in damages in their lawsuit against DeRocher, based on the same negligence in failing to safely identify and mark the pipeline.  No one was injured in the explosion, as both workers involved were able to run to safety before the rupture exploded into a fireball.  The settlement details remain confidential, but the companies have met an agreement in order to avoid further litigation.

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