UPDATE: $3 million awarded by jury to fracking victims

A jury just awarded Bob and Lisa Parr $3 million dollars in their fracking lawsuit against Aruba Petroleum. They said this was the first fracking case to go to trial. I’m trying to verify that.

Bob and Lisa Parr were neighbors to Tim and Christine Ruggiero in Wise County. I was there, in the Ruggiero kitchen, the day Lisa discovered that her timeline of doctor’s visits matched–exactly–Christine’s timeline of releases from the Aruba gas wells on her property.

Like Tim and Christine, Bob and Lisa shared all their information with me and I developed it into a case study for presentation to the EPA at Research Triangle Park and later to Gina McCarthy before she was EPA Administrator. The situation at the Parr’s and Ruggiero’s homes was so horrific, I even took Cynthia Giles, top enforcement officer for the EPA to see for herself. The Parr’s case study was added to others and published by Earthworks in Flowback: How the Texas Natural Gas Boom Affects Health and Safety.

Later the Parrs were highlighted in Gasland Part 2. Today’s decision might take some of the wind out of the fracking windbags who prattle on endlessly about how inaccurate Gasland is. Twelve SIX regular people who knew nothing about fracking were presented with the facts and awarded the victims $3 million dollars. It’s going to be hard to spin that.

I have blogged extensively about the sins of Aruba Petroleum. From my view, they are one of the most irresponsible and reckless companies in a plethora of reckless and irresponsible companies.

Aruba intends to appeal the jury’s decision. That means it will go to the Texas courts where judges are soaked in oil and gas money.


UPDATE: Their attorney has a blog post up about the verdict.

About Sharon Wilson

Sharon Wilson is considered a leading citizen expert on the impacts of shale oil and gas extraction. She is the go-to person whether it’s top EPA officials from D.C., national and international news networks, or residents facing the shock of eminent domain and the devastating environmental effects of natural gas development in their backyards.


  1. Alberta Neighbor says

    Wow, that’s uncanny, it’s just like the Alberta government lawyer predicted.

    April 18, 2014 – “An Alberta government lawyer argued in court this week that Jessica Ernst’s lawsuit on hydraulic fracturing and groundwater contamination should be struck down on the grounds that it would open a floodgate of litigation against the province.

    ‘There could be millions or billions of dollars worth of damages,’ argued Crown counsel Neil Boyle.”


    Congratulations to the Parrs!

    • Another Alberta Neighbour says

      Yes, indeed, congratulations to the Parrs and their team!

      Thank you Sharon for your vigilance and reporting.

      I’m grateful the Parrs didn’t settle and gag.

      Jessica Ernst

  2. Kim Feil says

    Last night at Arlington City Council I had the pleasure to remind Mayor Cluck how he turned off my mic in the middle of the Parr story and how they have been in litigation here in Dallas….I’m sure they found out today that they won….I reminded council that I have published every letter on my blog that I have sent to them as evidence to anyone wanting to sue that our town was reckless in not doing a health and environmental impact study first. I told them how dare they use Home Rule for Special Use Permits to drill in residential areas for a monentary advantage for the city at the expense of the citizen’s health and property values and to “let the law suits begin”!

  3. Jana says

    Congratulations Bob & Lisa. I hope you can now move quickly toward regaining your lives. The hell you have endured should not have happened to anyone. Thank you for your update Sharon. I understand it was also on Fox 4 locally. I will look for the link.

  4. says

    One well operation for three days to account for collateral damage?

    My question is this, was the awarded 3 million dollars nearly enough? It is difficult to not be cynical, but, could it be that these companies pursue their operations and literally account for and make allowances for such losses? If anyone has ever heard of such arrangements, in accounting or otherwise, I would love to hear about it.