Jones County family suing various oil companies

Published: Aug. 28, 2014 at 2:15 PM CDT
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Jones County residents Tae and Diedra Baucum are suing Petro Harvester Oil and Gas Co., LLC; Petro Harvester Operating Co., LLC; Champion Oilfield Service, LLC; Boots Smith Oilfield Services, LLC; Comstock Oil & Gas, LP; Jerry Huddleston; and Gary McAdams.

The lawsuit states the defendants disregarded human health and safety by dumping, drilling, pumping and burying oil filed waste below the surface of properties.

According to environmental expert Bob Bowcock, it's affecting the couple's property, which is in proximity to Petro Harvester.

Bowcock adds Petro Harvester property is contaminating the area with surface water discharge ponds, which have allegedly percolated into the shallow aquifer system.

Attorney Gerald Maples is representing the landowners.

"If they have contaminated an aquifer that contaminated that services the entire south end of the State of Mississippi... This aquifer is a huge thing that services most of South Mississippi," Maples said.

Jerry Huddleston with Petro Harvester said a member of their legal team will contact WDAM at a later date.

Allen Floyd, Department Director of the Mississippi Oil and Gas Board said he went to the Baucum property to see what was going on.

"We took our radiation meters and found no radioactivity," Floyd said.

That's the only thing MSOGB tested for.

Marlan Baucum provided WDAM with photos showing what Petro Harvester looked like before he addressed the company with his concerns.

The investigation is ongoing.