On Friday February 21, 2020, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued TPC Group over numerous environmental violations that contributed to a series of explosions at the company’s plant in Port Neches late last year.
As discussed on a previous blog, the November 27, 2019 explosions prompted the evacuation of over 60,000 residents, and left many concerned about the potential risks of toxic exposure related to the release of pressurized Butadiene gas, and the significant amount of asbestos installed at the plant.
Legal Update: Asbestos Discovery Confirmed, Texas AG Files Suit
Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has deep ties to the Port Neches area – the same community our very own Partner Aaron Heckaman calls home – and is closely tracking legal updates as the Texas AG’s case unfolds, and concerns within the community grow. We are also available to speak with local residents affected by the blast who have questions about their rights to compensation.
Again, we advise local residents and businesses to be wary of solicitations from TPC insurance representatives and adjusters who want them to sign insurance waivers. Doing so may limit legal options to file lawsuits over suffered harm and losses, and may create potential difficulties in securing sufficient compensation should victims later discover life-altering illnesses that may have been tied to the explosions.
Texas AG Sues TPC
The Texas Attorney General’s Office filed its lawsuit against Texas Petroleum Chemical on Friday February 21, 2020 in Travis County District Court on behalf of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. The suit comes after TCEQ officials referred the case to the Texas AG, which has the authority to pursue criminal investigations and steeper penalties, in December. Typically, the agency works to bring companies into compliance within its organization – a strategy many environmental watchdog groups argue often fails to deter repeat offenders.In the lawsuit, the state’s top prosecutor alleges TPC Group violated the Texas Clean Air Act and the Texas Water Code for harmful emissions, and for water contamination in the Star Lake Canal and other