Federal Judge Brian Miller has agreed that a lawsuit against Exxon Mobil over the safety of the 600-mile Pegasus pipeline that ruptured near Mayflower can proceed as a class action, though he limited the class somewhat.
All persons and entities who currently own real property subject to an easement for the Pegasus Pipeline and who have pipeline physically crossing their property, from Patoka, Illinois to Corsicana, Texas.
The suit, brought by Little Rock lawyer Thomas P. Thrash had also sought to cover those who’d formerly owned property with easements.
The plaintiffs in this case own property subject to easement by the pipeline and have pipeline crossing their property. They want rescission of the easement and removal of the pipeline or replacement of the pipeline. The suit focuses on the fact that Exxon has replaced 200 miles of of pipe, but not all, made with a type of welding prone to cracks. The suit will argue that a change in the flow of the material put in the line and the shipping of heavier tar sands in the line contributed to its failure.
A separate lawsuit pends over people who lived close to the pipeline break. Judge Miller had earlier denied efforts by Exxon to dismiss both suits.