April trial slated in gas tank explosion suit

David Yates Oct. 26, 2011, 9:00am


Petrofuels Quality Marketing and plaintiff Larenda Stringer, who claims a gas tank explosion sent shrapnel flying all over her property, will hammer out their differences in April if the case is not mediated before March 23.

As previously reported, Stringer filed suit against the Petrofuels in September 2010, alleging the company negligently failed to maintain its petroleum storage facilities.

On Oct. 20 a discovery control plan order was entered in the case, slating the suit for an April 2012 trial, court papers say.

According to her petition, on April 14, 2010, Stringer was at home when a Petrofeuls storage tank located next to her house exploded, injuring her and damaging her home and car.

"The explosion (sent) debris and shrapnel onto the property causing injury and damage to plaintiff's property, including her car," the suit states. "As a proximate result ... Stringer sustained injuries to her body."

In her suit, Stringer alleges Petrofuels negligently failed to train and supervise its employees, in addition to failing to maintain its tank.

Court records show that On Oct. 22, 2010, Petrofuels filed its original answer, asserting that Stringer's "actions or inactions were 51 percent of the cause of her alleged injuries and damages."

Petrofuels also maintains that the incident could have been caused by a third party.

Stringer is suing for past and future medical expenses, lost earnings and mental anguish.

Beaumont attorney Clay Dugas is representing her.

Houston attorney Thomas Sulton is representing Petrofuels.

Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court, is presiding over the case.

Case No. A188-390

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