Nelsonville Bypass Lawsuit Settled

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A lawsuit by a Nelsonville resident and against an excavation group who worked on the bypass has been settled and dismissed, according to court documents filed in Athens County Common Pleas Court.

Timothy E. Koker filed a complaint on June 17, 2014, against The Beaver Excavating Co., based in Canton, and Hilltop Energy, Inc, based in Lisbon. In the complaint, Koker said his property on Church Street suffered damage because of the use of explosives during “blasting work.”

“The blasting work launched large pieces of debris, including but not limited to rocks and stones, into the air and away from the site of the blasting work,” the civil complaint stated.

Koker said the blasting work “shook” and “damaged” his property and debris landed “within the proximity of the front door of the house,” according to court documents.

The property owner “demanded that the blasting work cease” until the Ohio Department of Transportation and the two defendants named in the case could determine how to stop launching the debris, but the work continued.

“Beaver and Hilltop acted with a disregard for Mr. Koker where there was a significant likelihood of substantial injury to Mr. Koker, Mr. Koker’s family and guests and the Mr. Koker’s property,” the court documents stated.

Koker asked the court to order the companies to pay compensation of $25,000.

Though the details of the settlement were not made public as part of a recent dismissal filing, Koker notified the court that he wanted to dismiss the claims based on the terms of a “settlement agreement and mutual release.”