Class action lawsuit filed against landfill owner in Jasper County

Class action lawsuit filed against landfill owner in Jasper County

RIDGELAND, S.C. (WTOC) - A class action lawsuit has been filed against Able Contracting, the company responsible for a trash pile that’s been burning since June.

It accuses the site owner of being negligent. The lawsuit is filed on behalf of a nearby construction company. However, the class action nature of it covers anyone who works or lives nearby.

The suit, filed last Friday, accuses Able Contracting of, "creating a dangerous environment and damages to individuals, their health, and their property interest.” It says the nearby businesses and property owners suffered “personal injury, lost revenue, and decreased property value.”

Lawyers accuse the landfill owner of not properly maintaining the debris and of failing to prevent a fire. Furthermore, it says the owner failed to use caution the way a, “reasonable and prudent business would have used under the circumstances.”

The suing party demanded a jury trial. Able Contracting has 30 days to respond. WTOC has reached out to the affected parties in the lawsuit, but have not heard back.

The 45-foot pile of debris continues to burn in the meantime. One resident we spoke to has given up hope of ever being able to return to her home.

“It’s over, and the more they search and dig, the more they’re going to find, and there’s no telling how far this contamination or whatever; there’s no telling how deep and wide it is, and I’ve just prepared myself for the worst," Carina Cruiel said.

State Senator Tom Davis toured the site on Friday.

“The size of the problem was really stunning. Second to that, once we get the thing under control, once we get the fire stopped and make sure there’s no contaminates into the water shed, once we get the site, you know, the site cleaned up and the debris moved elsewhere, we then need to go ahead and turn and hold the private company responsible for this accountable," Sen. Davis said.

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