David Yates Jun. 15, 2016, 1:49pm


A company who recently had a motion for default judgment granted against it is asking the court for a new trial.

On April 8, 2015, plaintiff Rosa Arredondo filed a complaint against OCI Partners LP of Dallas, OCI Beaumont LLC of Austin and Safway Services LLC of Austin in Jefferson County District Court, seeking more than $1 million in punitive damages for a scaffold collapse.

ParFab Field Services was later added as a defendant. The OCI defendants had contracted with ParFab to provide scaffold services.

On May 5 Arredondo filed a motion for entry of default judgment, asserting ParFab had failed to respond to the lawsuit within the allotted time, court records show.

Six days later, Judge Gary Sanderson, 60th District Court, granted the motion.

On June 8 ParFab field a motion for new trial, asserting its failure to appear was not intentional but a mistake due to unsuccessfully transmitted paperwork.

Court records show that on Aug. 26, 2015 an agreed scheduling order was entered, calling for the case to be mediated on or before July 1 and for all discovery to be completed by July 15.

The trial has been slated for the month of September 2016.

According to the original petition, the plaintiff was employed as a painter for Marquis Construction and was contracted to work at a Beaumont ammonia and methanol plant owned and operated by the two OCI defendants.

Arredondo was painting while standing on a scaffold on March 25, 2015. A Safway employee was working in an area above her. The Safway painter’s scaffolding came loose, fell, swung and struck the plaintiff in the head and neck, allegedly causing severe injuries.

Arredondo brings several counts of negligence, including failure to take precautionary measures to protect workers on site; to create policies and procedures for safety; to properly inspect, maintain, secure and repair any job hazards, including the scaffolding; and to monitor, train and supervise its employees.

Citing the defendants with breach of duty and gross negligence, Arredondo claims pain and suffering, mental anguish, impairment, loss of earning capacity and household services.

The plaintiff seeks: compensation for medical expenses; punitive damages of more than $1 million; pre- and post-judgment interest; attorney’s fees; expenses; and costs.

She is represented by Anthony Buzbee of the Buzbee Law Firm in Houston.

ParFab is represented by Brad Whalen, attorney for the Houston law firm Porter Hedges.

Jefferson County District Court case No. B-196980.

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