STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Judge rules in utility's favor in deadly Indiana explosion

A judge has ruled in favor of a utility in a lawsuit filed over a 2017 natural gas explosion in southwestern Indiana that killed two women and injured three other people.

Posted: Jun 9, 2021 4:26 PM

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) — A judge has ruled in favor of a utility in a lawsuit filed over a 2017 natural gas explosion in southwestern Indiana that killed two women and injured three other people.

A Vanderburgh County judge granted CenterPoint’s motion for summary judgment on Tuesday in the civil lawsuit.

The judge found that the plaintiffs failed to produce evidence the utility was negligent and that their negligence directly resulted in the two victims' deaths and injuries to three others, the Evansville Courier & Press reported.

The June 2017 explosion leveled a house in Evansville, killed Sharon Mand and Kathleen Woolems and wounded a man, a woman and her 10-year-old son.

The three surviving victims and representatives of Mand and Woolems’ estates alleged in their 2019 complaint that the utility, then known as Vectren, was negligent by failing to properly inspect gas lines and warn occupants of a leak. Two of the plaintiffs later withdrew their claims.

CenterPoint filed a motion for summary judgment, alleging there was no basis for the lawsuit.

A senior claims investigator for the utility said in an affidavit that an investigation showed that no Vectren employees had performed work at the residence for at least a year or more before the explosion, and that in the blast's aftermath, pressure tests on the gas lines did not reveal any leaks.

West Lafayette
Clear
84° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 82°
Kokomo
Partly Cloudy
79° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 79°
Rensselaer
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 78°
Fowler
Clear
84° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 82°
Williamsport
Clear
82° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 80°
Crawfordsville
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 60°
Feels Like: 79°
Frankfort
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 61°
Feels Like: 79°
Delphi
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 79°
Monticello
Clear
80° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 79°
Logansport
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 78°
Beautiful Week Ahead. Cooler, drier and less humid.
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 749097

Reported Deaths: 13745
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1030271775
Lake554211006
Allen41613691
St. Joseph36933564
Hamilton36505416
Elkhart29347459
Tippecanoe22849225
Vanderburgh22540400
Porter19313325
Johnson18386387
Hendricks17583317
Clark13190193
Madison13111344
Vigo12602253
LaPorte12385221
Monroe12152175
Delaware10947197
Howard10250225
Kosciusko9609119
Hancock8541144
Bartholomew8158157
Warrick7854156
Floyd7763180
Grant7227179
Wayne7154201
Boone6911103
Morgan6735141
Dubois6211118
Marshall6205116
Cass5989108
Henry5893108
Dearborn588878
Noble579786
Jackson508374
Shelby500697
Lawrence4727121
Gibson444093
Harrison440473
Clinton439855
DeKalb438585
Montgomery433890
Whitley405642
Huntington402181
Steuben398659
Miami392568
Jasper386254
Knox375690
Putnam371860
Wabash360583
Ripley346470
Adams344955
Jefferson335685
White329753
Daviess3028100
Wells294881
Decatur289992
Greene286385
Fayette284664
Posey273735
LaGrange272872
Scott269855
Clay265448
Randolph244683
Washington244534
Jennings235149
Spencer234131
Starke227558
Fountain218347
Sullivan213943
Owen210858
Fulton201542
Jay200832
Carroll193420
Orange188055
Perry186937
Rush175626
Vermillion173544
Franklin170135
Tipton165746
Parke148916
Pike137934
Blackford136032
Pulaski120047
Newton112636
Brown103943
Crawford102316
Benton100814
Martin91415
Warren83515
Switzerland8098
Union72810
Ohio57811
Unassigned0421

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events