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Lawsuit alleges ATCO LTD. responsible for Dickinsfield explosion

Last Updated Feb 13, 2017 at 5:18 am MDT

A class action lawsuit has been filed against ATCO LTD. in relation to the explosion of a private residence in the community of Dickinsfield. The explosion is alleged to be the result of the restoration of natural gas service to the community following the wildfire in May 2016.

The private residence and at least several other houses in the surrounding area were affected. Charges have been laid against ATCO LTD. for negligence in exercising due care and caution when restoring natural gas to Dickinsfield.

One of the two representative plaintiffs, Joshua Somers said,

“I thought my family had dodged a bullet when our home was spared from burning down. So when the gas explosion ripped our home apart, my family and I had to find a new place to live. It’s been more than a year now, and the way things are going, we may not be back in our home for at least another year. We want to know why ATCO didn’t stop our home from being partially demolished. They have a lot of explaining to do.”

Calgary-based Higgerty Law says the claim filed this week seeks damages in the amount of $10-million for:

  • Person who suffered loss or damage to their property
  • The cost of repairs or replacement of the lost or damaged property
  • Additional living expenses incurred in the process of procuring alternate housing
  • Damages for mental and emotional stress related to the loss or damage of the property
  • Out-of-pocket expenses associated with the loss or damage of the property


Mike Whalen, the second representative said,

“we lived in our camper outside our home for almost half a year, and things are still not back to normal. We don’t know if or when our home will ever be the same, which has put an immense amount of stress on myself, and my family. We just want ATCO to understand how devastating this explosion has been in our lives. We would like answers, and we would like our home and lives restores.

Co-Counsel to the lawsuit, Haggarty Law Principal Counsel, Patrick B. Higgerty, QC said, “ATCO LTD. has a reputation of being a responsible company in Alberta. It is unfortunate that its customers have been affected in such a profound way. We hope the company will do the right thing by making these families whole again.”