Home Canada Residents, businesses affected by Wheatley, Ont., explosion seek $100M in proposed class action

Residents, businesses affected by Wheatley, Ont., explosion seek $100M in proposed class action

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Residents and businesses affected by the 2021 explosion that rocked the small community of Wheatley, Ontario, joined Chatham-Kent and a proposed group of companies hired by the municipality to determine the source of the gas leak. The lawsuit seeks damages totaling $100 million. into a blast.

Windsor law firm Strosberg Sasso Sutts LLP filed a claim in the Chatham Superior Court of Justice on Friday seeking a class action lawsuit against the municipal company of Chatham-Kent and HSE Integrated Ltd.

The allegations and allegations of the proposed lawsuit have not been argued or proven in court. To proceed, the proposed action must be certified by a judge.

A lawyer for Chathamkent said the municipality was not in a position to comment but was focused on getting the scene back to normal.HSE did not respond to a request for comment from CBC News.

Strosberg Sasso Sutts is representing six residents and business owners and all others affected by the Aug. 26, 2021 blast, alleging it was “caused by the negligence” of the defendants doing. The explosion caused him to collapse two buildings and injure many in a town about 3,000 east of Leamington.

The breakdown of damages sought is as follows:

  • General damages are $60,000,000.
  • Special damages of $20,000,000.
  • Aggravated damages of $10,000,000.
  • $10,000,000 punitive damages.

“People just want our town back.”

Stephen Ingram, one of the residents named in the proposed class action lawsuit, said he and his wife Barbara “lost eight months of his life” after evacuating their home near the bomb site. .

He wasn’t home until April of this year, despite his insurance company being involved.

“Rather than lawsuits, I think people just want our town back. That’s the main thing,” Ingram said. “I mean, this isn’t like grabbing cash or money….we want things to go back to the way they were.”

Wheatley resident Stephen Ingram is one of the defendants in a proposed class action lawsuit that started Friday. (CBC)

Ingram is critical of the explosion handling and recovery efforts.

“I feel very strongly about it….there was pain and anguish…and what are we?,” he said.

“Not everyone is far away home.”

More to do to prevent explosions: Lawyers

According to the bill in the proposed lawsuit, defendants allege that the municipality and company acted “coercively, deliberately, outrageously, recklessly, capriciously, and utterly carelessly” in their handling of the explosion and the events surrounding it. I didn’t pay and was grossly negligent.” and they “disregarded the safety and rights” of plaintiffs.

They claimed officials were “motivated by economic considerations” and said those affected deserve compensation.

Harvey Strosberg, a senior partner at the law firm, argued that at 15 Erie Street North, where a gas leak was detected, the municipality or company should have done more to prevent the explosion before it exploded. ing.

“I was told they didn’t ventilate the basement and didn’t turn off the power. If there’s gas, you need an ignition source. If there’s no spark, there’s no explosion,” he told CBC News. Why didn’t they turn off the electricity and gas and ventilate the basement? That’s the question we ask. We don’t know the answer yet.”

Strausberg said municipalities should dispose of assets under their control “appropriately” after the explosion and evacuation.

“They should have inspected each property and had a system to deal with refrigerators.

Earlier this month, the municipality reduced the size of the evacuation zone in the town center of Wheatley, saying excavation in the area had been completed and roads could be reopened.

Watch | The power of the 2021 explosion that rocked Wheatley:

Wheatley explosion video

Video from security camera footage shows the force of the explosion in downtown Wheatley last summer. Submitted by John Urban.

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