Jury Finds Cabot Oil and Gas Negligent in Natural Gas Drilling

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SCRANTON -- A jury ruled that Cabot Oil and Gas was negligent in its natural gas drilling and created a private nuisance for two families in Susquehanna County.

Cabot Oil and Gas must pay millions of dollars to the families involved in the federal civil suit.

The Hubert family and the Ely family, both from Dimock Township, did not settle with Cabot Oil and Gas over water contamination. In 2012, 40 other residents settled with the company.

The Hubert and Ely families allege Cabot's natural gas drilling contaminated their drinking water.

The jury awarded  $2.75 million to the Ely family. The Hubert family is awarded $1.49 million.

It took jurors two days to reach the verdict.

See our complete coverage of this story HERE.


  • Concerned citizen

    What a joke. They don’t deserve that money. The Ely family built their $700k home there, knowing there was a well problem.

  • bill

    this lawsuit was garbage… i live near these families and the best thing that could happen to these houses would be a bulldozer right through the middle… we have had methane that made it into the water for way longer than cabot has been around. people who are happy about this obviously have no idea what they are talking about..These scumbags should be ashamed of themselves for taking money that they don’t deserve.

  • magicmikexxsm

    Wow simply wow, we must have a lot of stupid people in the jury pool up there…..
    I see now why they call Pa “Pennsyltucky”
    So the Jury couldn’t find Cabot for contaminating the wells , so they trump up a bs charge, and give them millions….
    Nuisance isn’t what they where being sued for, I remember this case on 16 back a few years ago the state DEP tested the water they said it was safe, and then the feds came up and tested it, they also said it was safe……
    I want to know the names on this jury, I have a neighbor who has a flag poll about 20′ from my bedroom window and when it’s windy the flag snaps so loud you can’t sleep..I have asked many of times for him to take it down or move the poll..I have to run air conditioners almost 24/7 to drown out the flag snap, it has become a nuisance and I am gonna sue him. I want this jury on my case so they can give me millions also……..lol eyes rolling….doesn’t get any better then this people…

    • magicmikexxsm

      Bob not very bright are you, if that was the case the state epa would have saved those maple trees from being cut down, and shut down the gas pipeline. duh….that’s okay Trump has a special place for idiots like you.

  • jefferson

    Guilt is not determined by “proof”. Guilt is determined by evidence which a jury decides to be “beyond a reasonable doubt”. A scientific hypothesis is not ever proved. Either the evidence supports or fails to support it. In this case, the jury decided that enough evidence existed to support the claim that Cabot’s activities significantly damaged the water. As for Cabot’s main defense, that they are not responsible for pollution associated with “naturally occurring substances”… this is a ludicrous attempt at defense of their dangerous activities. By the same reasoning, the pollution of NEPA waterways by coal-mining activity (obvious during the previous 100 years) was not the responsibility of the coal-mining companies. It’s about time that people woke up to corporate lies like this. Kudos to the courage and intelligence of the members of this jury!!

  • Dave

    Amazing how jury’s can ignore Facts. Just another OJ trial. Shame on that jury.Glad they are appealing

  • Ban Fracking

    There is justice! I am so happy these families have won this long battle against this toxic industry. Hopefully this will set precedent for the many families who have been without water for more than 7 years due to negligent gas companies.

    • FracDaddy

      If you followed this at all, which you obviously did not. You would know that The ely’s Attorney, and Dr. Ingraffea both admitted there is no proof of water issues caused by Cabot. And further more that was not even sent to the jury.

  • Frack my land

    Cabot Oil and Gas are one of the most respected, law abiding, non law breaking fracking companies that drill in the state of Pennsylvania !!! Just because a handful of wells got contaminated, what is the big deal ?

    • Smoky Joe

      Oil and Gas is the most contemptible industry on the planet. Worse than the lying tobacco industry of 50 years ago. Tobacco only killed smokers and perhaps their families. Oil and gas destroys water, air, and climate for our grandchildren and their grandchildren and their grandchildren. What a shameless bunch of villains. They all deserve to be locked up in jail forever and fed nothing but water they contaminated !

  • BZ22

    Proves that juries rule how they want to instead of with facts. It was obvious for people of average intelligence that the water was contaiminated prior to drilling but that wasn’t what they wanted to hear so they went after that big, mean gas company!!

    • p wep (@pat4597)

      Their water was crystal clear before the drilling, like spring water. I saw it, I drank it, I swam in it. Cabot got off to easy, those other 40 families never should have settled for peanuts.

      • BZ22

        Hopefully they’ll use some of that money to case their well further than 40′ and then have no problems!

    • Smoky Joe

      You don’t have any idea what you’re talking about. Water that had no problem before fracking began has now been contaminated in eight different states. You won’t drink that brown, foul smelling water, so shut your mouth.

      • BZ22

        Sorry but we live with five different well pads within a one mile radius of us, all producing and another one on its way. No, we wouldn’t drink that brown water but drilling didn’t cause it and we knew enough to case our well 200′ to avoid that problem. Have never had any issues whatsoever with our water and drink straight from the tap every day without a filter!!!

  • Tom

    Now these families can afford to MOVE and not worry about the worthless value of their land, plus award for the years they’ve had to live with undrinkable water. Justice took time, but was served!

  • FracDaddy

    This is a total misrepresentation of the facts. The water contamination part was thrown out before it went to the jury. Please check the court records, you will that is true. This was awarded for “nuisance” what ever that means. But WNEP didnt bother showing up for any of the 12 days…

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