Prague Couple Settles Lawsuit Over Earthquakes

Thursday, October 19th 2017, 2:06 pm

A Prague couple settles a lawsuit with two oil companies over injuries and earthquake damage to their home.

The couple's attorney says it's the first case involving earthquakes and wastewater injection that's been settled in Oklahoma.

Next month will be six years since the Prague earthquake and now the Ladra family, thanks to the settlement, is finally able to start buying supplies and fixing their home. 

Sandra Ladra has big plans. Since November 2011, she and her husband have had to live with the damage done by the 5.7 magnitude earthquake. 

"It's been a long six years. It's been very nervewracking, the conditions we've had to live in," Ladra said. 

At the time of the earthquake, oil companies claimed no responsibility.

"Just everybody was passing it off, it's natural, there's nothing nobody can do about it," Ladra said. "After a while, I realized somebody has to get their attention and I think we did that."

Sandra and her husband sued New Dominion and Spess Oil claiming nearby wastewater injection wells caused the earthquake. 

The case went all the way through the Oklahoma Supreme Court and was supposed to go to trial in November.  

The Ladras' attorney Scott Poynter says the details of the settlement can't be disclosed.

But Sandra says it's enough to start moving on. 

"That is a real relief, maybe to get back to our lives," Ladra said. 

And, she hopes that her landmark case will send a clear message for the future. 

"I do know that Oklahoma needs the oil and Oklahomans need their jobs and all of that," she said. "It's just, there's got to be a safer way of doing it."

The class action lawsuits for people here Prague as well as other areas around Oklahoma are still pending.