There are now at least 10 lawsuits related to the downtown Fort Worth hotel explosion – KERA News

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At least 10 lawsuits have been filed following the Jan. 8 explosion in downtown Fort Worth that left 21 people injured.

The explosion occurred Jan. 8 at the Sandman Signature Hotel, located in the Waggoner Building at 810 Houston St. The Sandman Hotel Group is owned by Northland Properties, and both names are listed in lawsuits.

Rock Libations, which owns Musume Restaurant, is also listed in some of the lawsuits. Musume was the restaurant located inside the hotel.

Atmos Energy is another defendant named in two of the suits.

Fort Worth Fire officials said the explosion was likely caused by a gas leak. After an internal investigation, Atmos Energy said it “found no indication that its system was involved.”

Lawsuits allege the hotel, hotel owners or Atmos Energy had a responsibility to provide a safe environment for guests and employees.

The lawsuits were filed in Dallas County, where Atmos has a principal place of business in Dallas.

Here are the lawsuits related to the downtown Fort Worth explosion.

Lopez Ontiveros V. Atmos Energy, et al

Tarrant County resident Karen Lopez Ontiveros worked in the Musume kitchen on the day of the explosion.

Lawsuit documents say Lopez Ontiveros was “fighting for her life, intubated and in a medically induced coma, with a low chance of survival”.

According to the lawsuit, she and other witnesses smelled a strong scent of “rotten eggs” and felt a burning sensation in their eyes, which her attorneys say evidenced a gas leak in the basement of the Sandman Hotel.

Witnesses saw a blue flame in the kitchen at about 3:30 p.m. which led to the explosion, according to the lawsuit.

Lopez Ontiveros is seeking $177 million in damages.

Seibolt V. Northland Properties, et al

Kansas resident David Seibolt filed a lawsuit against Northland Properties on Jan. 11.

Court documents state Seibolt was giving a presentation in a conference room on the second floor of the Sandman Signature Hotel when the explosion occurred.

Seibolt said he had “serious injuries to his head and body in general,” according to the lawsuit.

He’s seeking more than $1 million in monetary relief.

Medearis V. Atmos Energy, Sandman Management, Northland Properties

Tarrant County resident Christopher Medearis was in a building near the Sandman Signature Hotel at the time of the explosion.

Medearis said he ran for his life after the explosion and that he “tripped, fell, and as a result suffered personal bodily injury,” according to court documents.

The lawsuit, filed Jan. 11, also says Medearis has since experienced insomnia, a racing heart and anxiety after the explosion, KERA News previously reported.

Medearis is seeking over $1 million in monetary relief.

Mira V. Atmos Energy, et al

Dallas County resident Jose Filimon Mira was working on the premises at the time of the explosion, according to court documents.

Mira sued Atmos Energy, the hotel, and the hotel’s owners for negligence and failure to provide a safe working environment.

Mira is seeking more than $1 million in monetary relief.

Arana, et al V. Atmos Energy Corporation, et al

Texas resident Adam Arana and six other hotel guests allege they suffered physical injuries and mental anguish from the explosion.

The lawsuit was filed by Houston law firm Zehl & Associates, which has handled explosion cases in the past.

They want more than $1 million in monetary relief.

Marin, et al V. Atmos Energy Corporation, et al

Hotel workers Manuela Marin and 10 other employees filed this suit, also by Houston law firm Zehl & Associates.

Court documents allege the employees suffered injuries from the explosion that “should never occur under any circumstances.”

They could also suffer “severe pain suffering, anguish, impairment, disfigurement, and loss of earnings and earning capacity” in the future, according to the lawsuit.

They’re seeking up to $10 million in monetary relief.

Padilla, et al V. Northland Developments Inc, et al

Tarrant County residents Maria Grimaldo Padilla and Paola Salas allege they suffered “catastrophic bodily injuries and damages” and “severe mental trauma” from the explosion.

They’re each seeking more than $1 million in monetary relief.

Davies, et al V. Northland Properties Corporation, et al

Stuart James Davies and five other people who were on the hotel premises at the time of the explosion filed a lawsuit along with Delaware corporation Nelson Companies One and Indiana nonprofit Big Balloon Build.

Davies and the other five people allege they suffered physical and mental anguish from the explosion.

Nelson Companies One and Big Balloon Build allege they experienced a loss of profits and incurred extra expenses.

They’re seeking more than $10 million in monetary relief.

Bowman V. Atmos Energy, et al.

Timothy “Grant” Bowman and Kellie Bowman are suing for “catastrophic injuries and damages” they say they experienced due to the explosion.

Timothy Bowman worked as a valet and was feet away from the explosion, which left him “covered in blood”, according to court documents filed by Zehl & Associates.

The Bowmans want a jury trial and more than $1 million in monetary relief.

Hermosillo V. Atmos Energy, et al.

Tarrant County resident Carmen Hermosillo was a housekeeper at the Sandman Signature Hotel at the time of the explosion.

Court documents say she smelled a strong scent of “rotten eggs” and a burning sensation in her eyes but continued to work.

She was in an elevator headed to the basement to retrieve bed linens when the explosion happened, knocking her unconscious for hours.

Hermosillo is seeking more than $1 million in damages.

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